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According to CNN, the once “snooze-worthy” G20 Summit looks like “diplomacy on steroids.”
“Even pay-per-view paled in comparison,” reports CNN. Where else will people see heavyweights like Xi Jinping, Donald Trump, Vladimir Putin, and Justin Trudeau? To name three. The world is wondering who will sign Trump’s revamped NAFTA agreement.
Reportedly, Trump is turning the G20 summit into a one-stop diplomatic shop, with seven bilateral meetings in 48 hours.
It is not on the agenda yet, but Trump will have a meeting with Theresa May, and it will be worth it to watch the body language when the two eventually converse. Trump publicly criticized May’s Brexit deal. He said it made the possibility of a trade deal between the United States and the United Kingdom unlikely.
Nevertheless, all eyes will be on Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince, Mohammed bin Salman. People will want to know if the people he meets with smiled, shake hands, and make any deals. Will anyone address the brutal killing of Jamal Khashoggi two months ago? And if not, why not?
The world is on edge wondering which leader will draw Trump’s anger? American citizens are hoping it is not Xi. It would be bad news for world trade as both leaders seem set on a trade war.
The Chinese leader will likely approach Trump while thinking about the years ahead. He is the leader for life and will be attending G20 summits long after Trump is no longer in charge. However, that will not matter in Buenos Aires. The consequences of this meeting could cement a legacy that will put the U.S. president into the annals of economic history.
Then, there is Putin who is accused of shooting up Ukrainian ship in the Kerch Strait.
Trump cancelled his meeting with the Russian president. This means they will not be able to discuss all the crucial issues John Bolton claimed they might, from the Middle East to arms control.
Putin was grinning when he left his last meeting with Trump. This year, Putin will leave the G20 summit not knowing if the U.S. will interfere in Ukraine as Russia “tightens the screw on Kiev’s sovereignty in the Azov Sea,” reports CNN.
On Monday, Nov. 26, 2018, Trump told The Wall Street Journal he is ready to impose tariffs on another $267 billion of trade with China and indicated he is likely to increase tariffs on another $200 billion of trade from 10 to 25 percent next year.
Trump’s economic adviser tried to speak optimistically about the possibilities that could arise from his meeting with Xi. He stated that there is a “good possibility” a deal can be struck is “certain conditions” are met on “fairness and reciprocity,” including on issues of intellectual property, technology, ownership issues and tariffs. But Xi has been facing that same demand since trade talk began.
There is not telling if Xi or Trump will blink or fold but they both need to walk away winners if the world is to benefit.
Trump’s meeting with bin Salman has been downgraded. It will not be a full meet-and-greet, according to Bolton, however, Sarah Sanders says not to rule out some “interaction.” CNN promises this will still be a meeting to watch. The Saudi Crown Prince has already received a blessing from Trump for “his role, whatever it may be, in the Jamal Khashoggi affair in the form of a rambling White House statement last week that said he ‘may or may not’ have ordered the journalist’s killing.”
CNN predicts that Saudi minds are questioning if the American president will find a way to embarrass bin Salman through his enthusiastic embrace.
There will be a meeting between bin Salman and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan will not be resolved to the how and why Khashoggi was killed. More importantly, what happened to his body?
There is no doubt that Trump’s various meetings will be focused on his America first policy, especially on trade. This will likely kill any chance of substantial communication, which is usually a big deal at the G20 summit.
It is what hindered the agreement a few weeks ago at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit and last summer at the G7.
“Trump’s abhorrence of multilateralism is taking its toll and creating global drama, right out of ‘The Apprentice’ playbook. Ratings for this G20 may well go up.”
By Jeanette Smith
CNN: The G20 summit is a glimpse at the future world order
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