Trump and Kim Arrive in Singapore Ahead of Historic Summit

Roman Schwartz
June 11, 2018

White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow accused Trudeau of betraying Trump with "polarising" statements on trade policy that risked making the us leader look weak ahead of the historic summit with Kim.

Ahead of the summit, Canadian officials confirmed last Thursday that Trump would leave early on Saturday, missing a key meeting on climate change and environmental protections, after a spat with Trudeau and France's president Emmanuel Macron over tariffs.

In response to Mr Trump's decision to withhold U.S. support for the summit conclusions, a senior United Kingdom government source said: "We stand by the commitments made in the G7 communique".

But one US official, speaking on condition of anonymity, acknowledged: "The timing for all this is not very good at all". Here's point #14 in its entirety, for example: "Recognizing that countries that are more equal are also more stable, more peaceful and more democratic, we are resolved to strengthen the implementation of the Women, Peace and Security (WPS) agenda".

Kudlow, in an interview with CNN, argued that Trudeau's press conference criticisms of Trump's trade tariffs were inappropriate because of Trump's upcoming meeting with Kim Jong Un, and because they represented a shift from the more cooperative work that had been done to form the communique from the seven nations. He says that we are the problem with tariffs.

Trump continued with his tweets overnight, railing against countries that he said have trade surpluses with the United States.

"He followed up by asking why the United States should "allow countries to continue to make "massive trade surpluses", asserting that it is "not fair to the people of America" and that the USA is suffering under a "$800 billion trade deficit".

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"Not fair to the PEOPLE of America!"

Kudlow said the US had spent the summit negotiating in "good faith" with Trudeau and the other assembled leaders, and that the USA had planned to sign the communique until Trudeau's news conference, which Kudlow called a "sophomoric play". "I think within the first minute I'll know". Even before arriving in Charlevoix, the American leader drew fire from his G7 peers for new tariffs on imported steel and aluminum products including those from Canada and the European Union.

On June 7 - the eve of Trudeau's G7 summit - Trump sends out another missive - "Prime Minister Trudeau is being so indignant, bringing up the relationship that the USA and Canada had over the many years and all sorts of other things. but he doesn't bring up the fact that they charge us up to 300% on dairy - hurting our Farmers, killing our Agriculture!" That's not something seven leaders-along with the head of the European Union-develop, debate, and finalize over the course of a day and a half.

"Here's the thing", Kudlow said, "he really kind of stabbed us in the back. He was polite but firm that Canada will defend our economic interests - and, by the way, every other major industrialized democracy is on the same page as Canada".

Trump's extraordinary outburst on Monday against North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies, the European Union and Canada appeared aimed at striking a chord with voters who support his "America First" agenda.

He said that North Atlantic Treaty Organisation nations should "pay much more for the Military", tweeting that "Germany pays 1% (slowly) of GDP towards North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, while we pay 4% of a MUCH larger GDP".

He added that EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker thanks Trudeau "for the excellent preparation and chairing of this challenging summit".

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