Published: Fri, June 08, 2018
Finance | By Loren Pratt

Trump Spars With G-7 Host Ahead of Summit

The comments by the two leaders at a Parliament Hill news conference before they each departed to Charlevoix for the summit laid bare the frustrations and even anger at Trump's policy decisions.

Canada and France will take a polite, persuasive yet firm approach to Donald Trump at the G7, warning the U.S. President that his punishing trade tariffs will backfire and harm America's economy and work force.

Trump dug in his heels Thursday, though, and hit back with the following message the night before the leaders will meet face-to-face at the G7 summit in Quebec.

"Maybe the American president doesn't care about being isolated today, but we don't mind being six, if needs be", Macron told reporters.

"Because these six countries represent values, they represent an economic market which has the weight of history behind it and which is now a true worldwide force", added Macron after he had his one-to-one with Trudeau earlier in the day. A state visit to Britain is yet to happen and the pair have clashed several times over Trump's Twitter activity and political stances.

"Looking forward to straightening out unfair Trade Deals with the G-7 countries", Trump tweeted early Friday.

"[It was a joke] to the degree one can ever take what is said as a joke", the unnamed source said, "The impact on Canada and ultimately on workers in the USA won't be a laughing matter". We can only imagine that the president's phone has been ringing off the hook as world leaders try to get from POTUS himself just what is going on here.

By departing early, the US leader will miss talks about climate change and clean energy, and be out of the country by the time Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and other leaders begin closing news conferences likely to be laden with criticism of USA trade policy. Those nations are threatening new tariffs of their own on USA goods.

He said G7 countries shouldn't be talking about waging a trade war when there are real wars to fight, pointing to challenges in Syria, Lebanon and Iraq.

The top German diplomat specifically referenced Trump's decision to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal, the Paris climate accords, and the imposition of tariffs on steel and aluminum as unfathomable measures to take against his nation's closest allies.

Coincidentally, G7 leaders - Trump included - are scheduled to land at the Saguenay's Bagotville military airstrip before driving two hours to the summit site in La Malbaie.

Trump's tariffs targeted G7 allies under a section of USA trade law that justifies the action on the basis of national security - a characterization that Trudeau and others have vigorously rejected.

"Since the beginning, I have done what Canadians expect of their prime minister".

Trump will come face-to-face at the gathering in Charlevoix, Quebec, with world leaders whose views do not chime with his on a range of issues from trade to the environment as well as Iran and the construction of a new United States embassy in Jerusalem. Germany has suggested making accommodations over trade with the United States for fear of triggering a ratcheting up of tensions over cars that would embroil companies like BMW and Mercedes.

They tellingly talked up the Canada-Europe Union trade agreement as a model for global trade that supports sustainable development, independent dispute settlement, and is already boosting trade between the partners. Mr Trump reportedly asked in a call with Mr Trudeau over new tariffs.

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