Paris deal leads G-20 talks
HAMBURG, Germany — World powers lined up against U.S. President Donald Trump on climate change, reaffirming their support for international efforts to fight global warming.
The Group of 20 summit that ended Saturday in Hamburg also revealed tensions on trade, as the U.S. administration and international partners forged a deal that endorsed open markets but acknowledged countries had a right to put up barriers to block unfair practices
The summit’s final statement made clear the other countries and the European Union unanimously supported the Paris climate agreement rejected by Trump. They called the deal to reduce greenhouse gases “irreversible” and vowed to implement it “swiftly” and without exception.
The other countries, from European powers such as Germany to emerging ones such as China and energy producers such as Saudi Arabia, merely “took note” of the U.S. position, which was boxed off in a separate paragraph that the summit host, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, made clear applied only to the United States.
She said the U.S. position was “regrettable” but that the summit had achieved “good results in some areas,” and cited a hard-won agreement on trade that included Trump and the United States but did not erase the differences over the issue. She said the talks had been at times “difficult.”
Trump’s chief economic adviser played down tensions between the U.S. and other nations as the president headed home from his first G-20 summit.
On trade, the talks preserved the G-20’s condemnation of protectionism, a statement that has been a hallmark of the group’s efforts to combat the global financial crisis and the aftereffects of the Great Recession.
The group added new elements, however: an acknowledgment that trade must be “reciprocal and mutually advantageous” and that countries could use “legitimate trade defense instruments” if they are being taken advantage of.
U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said there was “incredible consensus” on the issue and that the U.S. pushed to include the phrasing about “reciprocal” trade.
The wording echoes concerns voiced by Trump, who has said trade must be fair as well as open and must benefit American companies and workers. He has focused on trade relationships where other countries run large surpluses with the U.S., meaning they sell more to U.S. consumers than they buy from American companies.