Canada rejects US duties on lumber as 'baseless'

Whilst the message of the meeting was predominantly a repetition of the G20 meeting held in March, reiterating the nations' commitment to free trade, the US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin hinted the US no longer intends to contribute to strengthening worldwide trade ties between nations, putting their own economic interest first.

"All the six others. said explicitly, and sometimes very directly, to the representatives of the U.S. administration that it is absolutely necessary to continue with the same spirit of worldwide cooperation", French Finance Minister Michel Sapin told reporters. Many of those countries are expected to sign the final deal at a ceremony in in Paris on June 7.

The world has a question for the Trump administration: How are things going with Washington's plans to overhaul taxes?

The China deal came just months after Trump was attacking Beijing in an election campaign in which he promised to restore trade barriers if he felt they were needed to protect U.S. interests.

And some officials are uneasy about the tax overhaul fueling a degenerative competition toward lower corporate tax rates around the world.

Canada says Finance Minister Bill Morneau rejected USA duties on softwood lumber as "baseless" in a meeting with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.

A broader theme not on the written agenda, however, was the desire of foreign leaders to get a better read on Trump's policies, and USA officials desire to make their positions clear.

'Awesomesauce,' proclaims US astronaut on historic spacewalk
After the first three minutes the fuel ran out and White maneuvered by twisting his body and pulling on the tether. NASA Astronaut Jack Fischer appears to play air guitar during the International Space Station's 200th spacewalk.

Kristian Rouz - A Group of Seven (G7) meeting revealed the deepening divide between the attitudes of the increasingly protectionist U.S. and the rest of the world's largest economies, which are attempting to uphold the free trade approach to the global exchange in goods and services.

According to French Finance Minister Michel Sapin, all the other rich countries unanimously called on USA to respect global trade. A statement at the southern port of Bari mirrored watered-down trade language from the Group of 20 two months ago, but ministers afterwards suggested an increasingly pragmatic tone to the talks after a stilted start.

Ministers are also trying to develop a strategy for "inclusive" economic growth-ensuring policies benefit the poor and middle class, and don't exacerbate growing income inequality-to counter a global political backlash against globalization.

The G-7 includes Canada, France, Germany, Japan, Italy, the US, and United Kingdom, with the European Union also attending the meeting.

The meeting also coincided with news of a significant foray by the Trump administration into global commerce.

Ministers also mandated a special working group created to combat threats to cybersecurity to start testing the financial system's vulnerability to attacks.

President Donald Trump says his busy schedule makes it "not possible" for his staff to speak at the podium with "perfect accuracy". "We tried to convince everyone we organised it to show how important the Italian agenda is", he quipped at the end of two days of discussions in a Norman fortress on Italy´s southern Adriatic coast.

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