G20 Finance Ministers Dropped Pledge Against Protectionism Upon US Remarks on Trade Norms

Time: 8:56 p.m. CEST

G20 meeting of finance ministers from the world’s largest economies left the meeting in Baden-Baden, Germany without clear statement on support to bolster free trade. The final statement was without anti-protectionist commitment, as the U.S. Treasury Steve Mnuchin opposed to communiqué wording.

The Washington Post explains that, the Trump administration on Saturday rejected a statement from other leading economies on trade protectionism and said, “it is the latest sign of how the administration’s more combative approach could create rifts with the U.S. allies.”

Mnuchin refuted the attempts of German’s officials that the statement should include the importance of free trade. Treasury Secretary said, the U.S. believes in free and fair trade, “and we wanted to make sure that the language in the communiqué reflected what we have discussed.”

The outcome of G20 meeting showed the White House contests current trade norms. Last year commitment was against all forms of protectionism, and said, “we will resist all forms of protectionism.” This year the statement said, “we are working to strengthen the contribution of trade to our economies.” The G20 meeting of finance ministers indicates a gathering of G20 heads of state, which this year will in Hamburg during the summer.


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