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Aso, G-7 Peers Prod U.S. by Linking Free Trade to Fight Against Inequality

Posted May 16, 2017

Under Economic Issues, International Trade Issues

(Kyodo | Bloomberg)

Finance Minister Taro Aso and some of his Group of Seven peers on Friday kept up their struggle to get U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin to budge from a view of economics that remains far removed from what the G-7 is used to.

During a two-day G-7 financial meeting that ran through Saturday in Bari, Italy, the finance chiefs sought to draw Mnuchin toward their previous consensus on free trade, despite a formal agenda that avoided pursuing that too explicitly by focusing on “inclusive growth” to address inequality.

“Many of us told Mr. Mnuchin that it is unthinkable that in the weeks and months to come, we can allow the established framework to be debated,” French Finance Minister Michel Sapin told reporters. “It is unthinkable, and it will not happen, that we destroy the framework that has given us stability and economic growth.” Click here to read more.

Related: U.S. Fails to Reassure Europe, Japan Over ‘Trumponomics’ (Reuters)