July 7, 2017 / 6:14 AM / 4 months ago

Trudeau: G20 will tell Trump he should take lead on climate change

BERLIN (Reuters) - Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told a German newspaper on Friday the leaders of G20 countries meeting in Hamburg would tell U.S. President Donald Trump he should take the lead in addressing climate change.

South Africa's President Jacob Zuma, Indonesia's President Joko Widodo, Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, Brazilian President Michel Temer, Chinese President Xi Jinping, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Emmanuel Macron, Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May, India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Mexico's President Enrique Pena Nieto, Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, South Korea's President Moon Jae-in, Russian President Vladimir Putin, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, U.S. President Donald Trump, European Council President Donald Tusk, International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Christine Lagarde, Netherlands' Prime Minister Mark Rutte, Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, World Bank President Jim Yong Kim, Financial Stability Board (FSB) President Mark Carney, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, Saudi Arabia Minister of State Ibrahim Abdulaziz Al-Assaf, United Nations Secretary-general Antonio Guterres, Norway's Prime Minister Erna Solberg, Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc pose for a family photo at the G20 leaders summit in Hamburg, Germany July 7, 2017. REUTERS/Wolfgang Rattay

Trump decided last month to pull the United States out of the 2015 Paris accord on climate change, saying it would wipe out U.S. jobs. Climate policy is expected to be a significant bone of contention at the G20 summit that German Chancellor Angela Merkel is hosting on Friday and Saturday.

“We’ll tell him it’s important to take a lead role in tackling climate change and creating good jobs,” Trudeau told mass-selling Bild newspaper.

In a second interview, Trudeau told Der Spiegel magazine that he regretted Washington’s withdrawal from the Paris deal and added: “We’re in close contact with President Trump to see where we can work together ... He has signalled to us that he is interested in taking action against environmental pollution.”

Trudeau told Bild there was no doubt that climate change was happening, and it was a challenge but also an opportunity to invest. He added the same was true of global trade. Trump has advocated more protectionist measures.

Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau at the start of the "retreat meeting" on the first day of the G20 summit in Hamburg, Germany, July 7, 2017. REUTERS/John

“Instead of saying we’ll stop trade, we need to create opportunities for smaller companies and protect workers’ rights with progressive trade agreements like CETA,” Trudeau said, referring to the EU-Canada free trade deal.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel welcomes Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to the opening day of the G20 leaders summit in Hamburg, Germany, July 7, 2017. REUTERS/Ian Langsdon/Pool

Disputes over cheese and pharmaceuticals are holding up the start of CETA, which both sides have championed as a landmark deal for open markets against a protectionist tide.

Trudeau also told Der Spiegel that Canada had done what it could on CETA and it was now up to Europe to decide “whether it believes in trade with Canada or not”.

Asked about China, the Canadian Liberal leader said it had understood that trade with other countries was a way to alleviate poverty. Trudeau said Canada was talking to China about workers’ rights, environmental protection and topics “where China has not always felt comfortable”.

“I think it’s important to formulate clear rules based on principles,” he said.

Reporting by Michelle Martin; Editing by Michael Nienaber and Mark Heinrich

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
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