ROME May 8 Trade will not be on the agenda of a
meeting of finance ministers and central bankers from the Group
of Seven rich nations in Italy this week, officials from the
Italian Treasury said on Monday.
The officials said at a briefing ahead of the May 11-13
meeting in the southern city of Bari that trade would instead
be discussed by G7 leaders at a meeting in Taormina, Sicily at
the end of this month.
The decision to leave it off the agenda in Bari follows a
meeting of the larger Group of 20 financial leaders in Baden
Baden, Germany, in March, when ministers dropped their
traditional pledge to keep global free trade open, acquiescing
to an increasingly protectionist United States.
The Bari G7 will focus on issues including international
taxation, cyber security, better coordination of global
financial institutions and ways to fight inequality, said the
officials, who asked not to be named or quoted directly.
There will also be a broad discussion of the state of the
global economy and a formal joint statement will be issued at
the end of the meeting, they said.
The statement will make reference to exchange rates and
there has already been an agreement to maintain the language
used by the G20 in Baden Baden, they said.
That G20 statement read as follows:
"We reiterate that excess volatility and disorderly
movements in exchange rates can have adverse implications for
economic and financial stability. We will consult closely on
exchange markets. We reaffirm our previous exchange rate
commitments, including that we will refrain from competitive
devaluations and we will not target our exchange rates for
(Reporting by Gavin Jones and Giuseppe Fonte)