- President Trump plans to participate in the APEC video summit to be held this week.
- The U.S. Chamber of Commerce expressed concern on Monday that the United States was left out in the cold.
- President Trump is now busy fighting election lawsuits, hoping to keep his presidential position.
U.S. President Donald Trump did not attend the ASEAN summit last week. At the summit, 15 countries signed the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) trade agreement. Officials revealed that in this context, President Trump is expected to attend the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Conference (APEC) online summit.
On Wednesday, senior US officials told Reuters that President Trump plans to participate in the APEC video summit to be held this week. If the news is true, this will be Trump’s first meeting since 2017.
Last year, President Trump originally planned to participate in the APEC summit held in Chile, but in the end, Chile canceled the summit due to the outbreak of anti-government protests.
The Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Conference (APEC) is hosted by Malaysia, and will be held through video in response to the epidemic. It is expected that Chinese President Xi Jinping will also attend.
President Xi will not only participate in the leaders’ meeting on Friday but will also give a speech at the leaders’ meeting on Thursday.
The official in charge of APEC in the United States said last week that the United States has not yet decided who will attend APEC. He believes that Xi Jinping should become the focus of the audience as China expands its influence in Asia. The White House declined to comment on this matter.
At the ASEAN summit last weekend, the U.S. government sent National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien as a representative to the meeting. The level was lower than that of other countries and was criticized. At the summit, 15 member states even signed a trade agreement led by China.
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce expressed concern on Monday that the United States was left out in the cold, saying that the signing of the RCEP trade agreement by 15 countries is tantamount to forming the world’s largest free trade alliance, giving China a leading role in the region.
Trump has No Time for International Participation
President Trump is now busy fighting election lawsuits, hoping to keep his presidential position. Regarding the G7 summit that he canceled due to the epidemic in June this year, three diplomats in the United States revealed that President Trump still plans to reorganize the summit.
Before participating in such summits, national leaders usually spend several months preparing a joint statement in advance. The three diplomats said that the Trump team did not place the G7 summit on the timetable, nor did it negotiate a joint statement with other countries in the past few months.
President Trump announced in August this year that he hopes to hold the G7 summit “when the atmosphere is calmer,” after the election. In addition, he criticized the G7 members as “a group of very outdated countries,” and expressed his intention to invite Australia, Russia, South Korea, India, and other countries to attend.
However, President Trump is still reluctant to admit that he lost in the presidential election on November 3, and now it seems very difficult to prepare for the G7 before the handover on January 20 next year.