The US world economics policy is raising fears of American protectionism and a reduction in international cooperation. So say six of the G7 members after a recent meeting in Southern Italy. According to Americans, the view of the US on word economics is gradually being accepted by the world’s major economies. G7 says not! They infer that president Trump’s plans appear to be protectionist and largely ignore the general world view of a number of economic issues.
According to Steven Mnuchin, the US Treasury Secretary, the US has the right to be protectionist if it believes trade is unfair or not free. This is a policy shift that has worried other large economies, particularly Europe and Japan.
The Group of Seven (G7) held a meeting in Italy to discuss America’s new plans. They are afraid that they may be protectionist and a backward step from the global approach currently being taken on climate change and banking reform.
Recent optimism seems to have been halted in its tracks. Nobody appears to understand what the US means by the term ‘fair trade’. The European G7 delegates believe that ‘fair trade’ relates to sticking to the World Trade Organization rules.
Nobody seems to understand what the US means by the term. The majority of the G7 delegates believe that balancing trade bilaterally is not a sound economics practice. Issues such as trade surpluses and deficits cannot be considered bilaterally, only in global terms.
Uncertainty about US policy has introduced a level of risk to the steps taken by the G7 nations. Most believe that international cooperation is essential, as is a global approach to free and fair trade. They certainly do not agree with Mnuchin’s comment that “people are more comfortable today, now that they’ve had the opportunity to spend time with me and listen to the president and hear our economic message.”
The six other members disagree with that comment, and stated to US delegates that “. . . it is absolutely necessary to continue with the same spirit of international cooperation” according to Michel Sapin, the French Finance Minister. Nobody is getting used to US World Economics Policy other than the Americans it seems.