A man wearing a mask President Donald Trump, front left, is joined by other "world leaders" during a protest ahead of the G-7 summit in Biarritz, France Friday. Photo: AP
politics

G7 leaders to open summit focused on world economy

8 Comments
By DARLENE SUPERVILLE

U.S. President Donald Trump and other leaders of the world's most industrialized nations will open their annual G7 summit on Saturday by discussing the global economy.

White House officials said that the session was added to the schedule at the last minute at Trump's request.

Trump insists the U.S. economy is strong despite fears that a recession may be on the horizon. At the same time, global economic growth has slowed due to weakness in Germany, Europe's largest economy, and a pronounced slowdown in China, the world's second-largest economy, as it remains locked in a tense trade standoff with the U.S.

The dour global outlook is partly a reflection of Trump's combative approach to trade with China and other nations he has hit or threatened to hit with tariffs.

Trump and the six other leaders of the Group of Seven nations will be meeting in the southwestern French resort town of Biarritz. France holds the 2019 presidency of the G7, which also includes Britain, Canada, Germany, Italy and Japan.

Leaders are to meet at an informal dinner Saturday, where they are expected to discuss foreign policy and security issues before more formal working sessions Sunday and Monday.

Trump is also scheduled to meet on the sidelines of the summit with several world leaders, including French President Emmanuel Macron, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Boris Johnson, Britain's new prime minister, will also have his first face-to-face meeting with Trump, a personal friend, since taking office a few weeks ago.

Trump also plans to raise the issue of a landmark tax France is imposing on major tech companies like Google and Facebook despite Trump's threats of retaliatory tariffs on French wine. The French government has said the tax is meant as a temporary measure pending the conclusion of negotiations on an international deal France wants to work out with the U.S.

The tax is designed to keep multinational corporations from avoiding taxes by setting up European headquarters in low-tax European countries. Currently, companies such as Google, Amazon, Facebook, Apple, Airbnb and Uber pay very little tax on their significant business in countries like France.

The Trump administration says the tax is discriminatory against U.S. business.

Meanwhile, protesters are beginning to set up camp on both sides of the border between France and Spain.

They're calling it a "counter-summit" and have a packed schedule of conferences and workshops along the Basque coast to protest social and economic inequality, climate change, migration policies and other concerns.

Sebastien Bailleul, a spokesman for the protesters, said Wednesday several thousand people are expected. He says they're expecting the protest to be peaceful, in contrast with previous summits when protests have degenerated into running battles with police.

© Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

©2019 GPlusMedia Inc.

8 Comments
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They're calling it a "counter-summit" and have a packed schedule of conferences and workshops along the Basque coast to protest social and economic inequality, climate change, migration policies and other concerns.

No better place for it. People power needs to triumph over the so-called leaders. They care nothing for us.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

If Trump wants to bring back jobs to America, he shouldn't against France's tax proposal, he should be urging France and other nations to go ahead with new tax structures on big techs. At the moment, the big techs are free to roam, ie take their earnings on a whirlwind trip until it's no longer taxable.

Countries of the world must unite and close the taxfree superhighway that leads to places like the Netherlands, the Caymans etc.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

They're ... protest(ing) social and economic inequality

So... this is a country vs country thing? Individual vs individual? Are they pushing for a global socialist environment? Sounds awful. Nothing will get done.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

*global economic growth has slowed due to weakness in Germany, Europe's largest economy, and a pronounced slowdown in China, the world's second-largest economy, as it remains locked in a tense trade standoff with the U.S.*

No mention of the workd's third largest economy, does it mean it's economy is fine and can be counted on to step up to the plate and drive global economic growth or is it that the present downturn is not of its making as usual and is unconcern.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

hope they brought a high chair, crayons, and a colouring book for his nibs

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Since Trump will be there this will be a failure.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Sideline the US, and all be worked itself out.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

I just saw the French news reporting about this, the globalists have created quite the playground for themselves in Biarritz.

The whole town is locked down hermetically with public tranportation hubs closed and residents need to wear special badges and pass several checkpoints just to reach their own homes.

A security force of no less than 1300 people is controlling the area non-stop.

I fully support the anti-globalism protestors as long as they don't use violence and destroy others people property however the people who do that are no real anarchists but infiltrators whose purpose is to put the protestors in a bad light.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

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