- British Prime Minister Boris Johnson told reporters that he was "very, very worried" about the conflict between the United States and China.
- Johnson stressed that he hopes to see the opening of global trade, to see the easing of tensions, and a decrease in tariffs.
- Trump stated that, in fact, the United States is currently getting along very well with China.
France hosted the G7 summit in Biarritz from August 24th to 26th, 2019. Although China did not participate, and the China-US trade war is not an issue, it is an unavoidable topic. Only seven Western countries (and the European Union representing Europe) are present, but the group discussed pressing issues, such as the global economy, climate change, Libya, Iran, terrorism and immigration issues.
The elephant in the room, however, was the economic conflict between the world’s first and second-largest economies.
British Prime Minister Johnson
On the way to Biarritz to participate in the G7 summit, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson told reporters that he was “very, very worried” about the conflict between the United States and China.
Earlier, after Beijing announced a new retaliatory measure against Trump’s trade penalties to China, Trump released a series of bizarre tweets, including a statement that he would order US companies to withdraw from China.
When Johnson was asked about this question, he said that this is not the way forward. In any case, those who support increased tariffs, whether true or not, may be held responsible for the global economic downturn.
Johnson stressed that he hopes to see the opening of global trade, hopes to see the easing of tensions, and hopes to see a decrease in tariffs.
European Council President Donald Tusk, who attended the G7 summit, also said at a press conference on the eve of the opening of the summit that the trade war must stop. If the United States uses tariffs for political reasons, it will endanger the world economy.
US President Trump’s repetition
The G7 summit was held, and Prime Minister Johnson held a bilateral meeting with President Trump for breakfast. British media reported that President Trump also admitted that he had second thoughts on the China-US trade war issue, and giving up the threat of escalating the trade war with China.
Trump said that there is no plan to use the US 1977 International Emergency Economic Power Act to force US companies to leave China. He added that he would have the right to declare a state of emergency throughout the United States if he wishes.
Trump also added, that in fact, the United States is currently getting along very well with China. He believes that China wants to conclude a deal more than the US. But then, his spokeswoman insisted that President Trump’s only regret was that no higher tariffs were imposed.
What is the G7? Why doesn’t China participate?
The G7 is an international organization composed of the seven so-called advanced economies of the world. Its members include Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States. EU leaders representing Europe also attended.
The group considers itself to be a valued community with a key principle of freedom, human rights, democracy and the rule of law, and prosperity and sustainable development.
After the international economy was hit by the oil crisis in the 1970s, the six Western countries met for the first time in 1975, and exchanged views on possible solutions to the global economic crisis. Canada joined the following year and became the G7. Ministers and civil servants of the G7 meet throughout the year to discuss issues of common concern.
Although China has the world’s largest population, and the world’s second-largest economy, China’s per capita wealth is relatively low. Although China is not considered a developed economy like the G7 member states, it belongs to the G20 Group. As the world’s second-largest economy, it has an important impact on the world economy.