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Datum objave: 28.06.2019

G20 JAPAN 2019

Osaka, Osaka Pref. Summit Meeting June 28 to 29, 2019

G-20 leaders end 1st day of Osaka summit with wagyu beef

Tokyo Leaders from the Group of 20 major economies wrapped up the first day of their summit in Osaka, western Japan, on Friday with a kyogen traditional theater performance and local cuisine featuring wagyu beef and deep fried anglerfish.

Arriving with their spouses at the Osaka Geihinkan guest house, the leaders were greeted one by one by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and his wife Akie, who was clad in a chic black kimono with a white obi belt.

Amid the sound of beating taiko drums, the group lined up for a photo with Osaka Castle in the background and were then ushered into an open-air theater to watch a performance by famed kyogen actor Nomura Mansai, who will supervise the opening and closing ceremonies for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Pianist Nobuyuki Tsujii, who was born blind, then took the stage to play "Hana wa saku" (Flowers will bloom), a song written to raise funds for recovery from the 2011 earthquake and tsunami in northeastern Japan.

He was joined by opera singer Michie Nakamaru for several more songs before the group then moved indoors for dinner.

Seated nearly elbow to elbow across rows of long tables, the group listened to a brief speech by Abe in which he said the leaders had "worked enough today and should now enjoy the meal."

"Kanpai!" (Cheers!) they all said as they turned their attention to dinner, along with a large selection of local wines and sake. Dessert was peach and wafer treats, followed by green tea.

G20 Vlog Ep4: Why did Japan pick Osaka to host its first-ever G20 summit?

Geihinkan guest house G20 video

Nations agree to draw up rules for free flow of dana

Osaka  Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced Friday the establishment of the so-called “Osaka Track,” a framework for multilateral negotiations on rules to enable the free flow of data across borders.

The idea was put forward at an event related to digital economy held on the sidelines of the G20 summit. China has agreed to draw up rules together with Japan, the United States and Europe, ensuring the start of genuine negotiations under the framework.

Abe said he was launching the Osaka Track together with 78 countries and regions of the World Trade Organization who share the same goal of promoting the free flow of data under valid rules.

The initiative aims to establish international rules for the flow of data similar to those that exist for goods and services. Parties to the framework are expected to discuss measures to facilitate the cross-border flow of data among corporations, for example, while protecting personal information and intellectual property.

About 80 WTO member countries have already begun to discuss issues related to digital economy. Abe’s declaration aims to serve as the “starting gun” to kick-start full-fledged negotiations. Japan and the other countries aim to achieve concrete results before a WTO ministerial meeting in June 2020.Speech

Profile of G-20 leaders

Tokyo  The following are profiles of leaders of the countries making up the Group of 20 major economies. This year's G-20 summit takes place in Osaka, western Japan, on June 28 to June 29.

Argentina - President Mauricio Macri

Macri is aiming for his second term in the presidential election expected in October but is likely to face an uphill battle amid Argentina's economic woes. Inflation was nearly 50 percent in 2018 and the country's currency, the peso, has been heavily devalued, sapping households of spending power.

The 60-year-old leader is a son of a prominent Italian-born industrialist and was brought up in the family business. He studied civil engineering at university and served as senior officials in construction and other companies.

In 1991, he was kidnapped by rogue police officers and was held for nearly two weeks until his family paid ransom, an experience that purportedly led him to pursue a career in politics. The ransom is said to have totaled millions of dollars.

Macri later became head of the Boca Juniors, one of the country's most popular soccer teams, before being elected mayor of Buenos Aires in 2007. He has been president since 2015 and was the host of last year's G-20 summit in the Argentine capital.

A big fan of Freddie Mercury, he has sometimes impersonated the late Queen singer.

Australia - Prime Minister Scott Morrison


Morrison arrives in Japan for the first time for the G-20 summit, having come to office last August and then won in the country's general election on May 18.

His Liberal Party and coalition partner National Party performed better than media predictions in the election to take the country's conservative government into its third-consecutive term.

Morrison had campaigned on a policy of fiscally responsible action on climate change, rejecting proposals to increase renewable energy on the grounds it would damage mining exports and drive up electricity prices.

The 51-year-old became Australia's seventh prime minister in 11 years after he replaced former Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.

Well-known for his nickname "ScoMo," Morrison is a graduate of the University of New South Wales.

He is a Protestant and first met his wife Jenny when they were attending church as teenagers.

Brazil - President Jair Bolsonaro


Retired military officer Bolsonaro entered office in January, with a promise to crack down on crime and ease gun control laws so that ordinary people can defend themselves.

The 64-year-old right-wing politician, dubbed "Trump of the Tropics" for his radical comments, has been a vocal supporter of U.S. President Donald Trump.

He also expressed skepticism about Chinese investment in Brazil during last year's election campaign, much of which he was forced to sit out after being hospitalized by a life-threatening knife stab to the abdomen in September.

Bolsonaro is also known for praising Brazil's 1964-1985 military dictatorship, and for making remarks some have interpreted as racist.

Hailing from Sao Paulo, he graduated from military academy and joined a paratrooper brigade. He decided to pursue a political career after being disciplined for advocating a rise in military salaries, in a column he wrote for a local magazine in 1986.

He served as a lower-house member for seven consecutive terms from 1991 before being elected president.

A Catholic with the middle name Messias, meaning savior, he has called the presidential post his mission from God.

Britain - Prime Minister Theresa May

Following the historic referendum to leave the European Union, May took over as the country's second female prime minister in 2016 after Margaret Thatcher.

But the 62-year-old resigned as leader of the Conservative Party on June 7 after having repeatedly failed to secure approval in Parliament for her Brexit deal. She will, however, remain as prime minister until her successor is selected, possibly by the end of July.

Before being elected to Parliament in 1997, May worked at the Bank of England for six years and later became head of the European Affairs Unit of the Association for Payment Clearing Services.

She went to both state-run and private schools before studying geography at St Hugh's College, Oxford University, where she met her husband Philip May through an introduction by the subsequent Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto.

When former Prime Minister David Cameron took power in 2010, she was appointed home secretary and in that role advocated tighter restrictions on immigration. She was the longest-serving home secretary for over 60 years.

Known as a fashion-conscious leader, she also loves cricket and cooking.

Canada - Prime Minister Justin Trudeau

This is Trudeau's fifth G-20 summit after taking power following his Liberal Party's victory in October 2015.

Trudeau was born in Ottawa on Christmas Day in 1971 to then Prime Minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau. From very early in his life, he grew up in the public eye.

The 47-year-old graduated from McGill University in 1994 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in literature and continued on to complete a Bachelor of Education degree at the University of British Columbia. He spent several years teaching French and math among other subjects as a schoolteacher.

After his younger brother died in an avalanche while skiing in 1998, Trudeau became involved in promoting avalanche safety.

The telegenic prime minister entered politics in 2007. He was elected leader of the Liberal Party in April 2013 and attracted support particularly from younger voters with his call for respecting diversity and ensuring fair economic opportunities.

He is married to Sophie Gregoire, a former TV and radio host. They have three children.

China - President Xi Jinping

Eyes will be on Xi's talks with U.S. President Donald Trump on the sidelines of the G-20 summit in search of a breakthrough in their countries' bitter trade dispute.

Since taking office in 2013, Xi has solidified power at home via his signature anticorruption campaign and economic reforms. Many pundits consider him the most powerful Chinese leader since Mao Zedong, founder of the People's Republic of China, with his position strengthened by the elimination in 2018 of the two-term limit for the president.

Xi has pushed to increase China's influence abroad through the "Belt and Road" infrastructure development initiative which has drawn support from over 120 countries across three continents but also criticism for its record of saddling poor countries with debt.

The 66-year-old has also sought to assert a stronger military presence in the resource-rich East and South China seas, a strategy that has inflamed tensions with neighbors including Japan.

Xi is a son of late Vice Premier Xi Zhongxun, who served under then Premier Zhou Enlai, and his wife, Peng Liyuan, was a famous folk singer for the People's Liberation Army.

He enjoys sports including soccer and swimming.

France - President Emmanuel Macron

Macron became the youngest French president in May 2017 when he beat far-right National Front candidate Marine Le Pen.

The 41-year-old former economy minister was the first president not to belong to either of the two major political forces that had shaped politics in postwar France.

This is the president's first time in Japan since taking office.

Born to two doctors in the northern French city of Amiens in 1977, Macron has a background in philosophy and graduated from the Ecole Nationale d'Administration in 2004.

The president polished his ability with words working as an assistant editor of the works of philosopher Paul Ricoeur, after which he served as the Minister for Economy in 2014. He eventually passed his signature legislation, the "Macron Law," which targeted financial growth in the country by extending store opening hours to Sundays.

Macron expressed his determination to rebuild Notre Dame Cathedral within five years after a devastating fire engulfed it on April 15, with countries including Japan pledging support in its reconstruction.

He married his high school teacher Brigitte Macron, nee Trogneux, in 2007.

Germany - Chancellor Angela Merkel

Assuming her post in November 2005, Merkel is the third-longest serving German chancellor since World War II, behind Helmut Kohl and Konrad Adenauer.

The 64-year-old, the country's first female chancellor, was born in Hamburg in 1954 to a mother who taught English and Latin, and a father who was a Protestant pastor and theologian. She grew up in East Germany and is fluent in Russian.

Merkel, trained as a physicist, worked as a member of staff at the Central Institute for Physical Chemistry at the Academy of Sciences in Berlin before entering politics in 1989.

She served an array of positions prior to becoming chancellor, including minister for women and youth, during which she emphasized the benefits of good early childhood education as well as parental leave for both parents.

In October, Merkel announced that she would not seek re-election as the leader of the Christian Democratic Union and said she would step down as chancellor in 2021, bringing her 16 years in power to an end.

Merkel is passionate about sports, believing it can be a "real driving force for integration." She has been married to her scientist husband Joachim Sauer since 1998.

India - Prime Minister Narendra Modi

Modi was sworn in for a second straight term in office in late May following his party's landslide victory in a general election with a stridently nationalistic message.

While the 68-year-old leader has portrayed himself as an economic reformer, he is known for being tough on national security, including launching an airstrike in February targeting what India claimed was a militant training camp in Pakistan. His Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party's consolidation of power has caused fear among the country's sizeable Muslim minority.

Facing slowing economic growth and high unemployment, Modi has pledged to increase infrastructure investment and improve living standards in regional areas.

Modi has been seeking to boost India's engagement with East Asian nations under his "Act East" policy and has backed Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's call for a rules-based, free and open Indo-Pacific region.

Abe and Modi have built a close relationship through a series of reciprocal visits. Last year, Modi became the first foreign leader to visit Abe's vacation home near Mt. Fuji.

Modi, a former tea seller, rose through the ranks of the BJP and became prime minister in 2014. He was born in a small town in Gujarat in western India.

Indonesia - President Joko Widodo

Better known as "Jokowi," the 58-year-old has been popular among the public as the first commoner to serve as president of Indonesia, born into the poor family of a carpenter.

His trip to Japan follows his re-election in the presidential race in April that will extend his term to 2024. He was first elected to lead the country of 260 million in 2014.

Born in Solo in Central Java Province in 1961, Jokowi studied forestry at Gadjah Mada University and succeeded in his furniture exporting business.

He was elected as mayor of Solo in 2005 and as governor of Jakarta in 2012, during which he quickly gained popularity by regularly visiting local communities, particularly in poor areas, and spending time talking to residents about the city's problems such as floods and transportation. He continued those activities after being elected president.

Riding on the success of the Asian Games last summer, the president has expressed his willingness to host the Summer Olympics in 2032 as the first Southeast Asian country to do so.

He likes riding a motorcycle and listening to heavy metal music.

Italy - Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte


Before being sworn in as prime minister of Italy in June 2018, Conte was a law professor with no previous political experience.

The 54-year-old, who has a reputation as a sharp dresser, was picked by the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement and the right-wing League, which form the current ruling coalition that ended a months-long political vacuum after no single party won a majority at the last general election.

Under his government, Italy became in March the first Group of Seven major economy to join Chinese President Xi Jinping's Belt and Road cross-border infrastructure initiative.

In a meeting in the following month in Italy, which will hold the G-20 presidency in 2021, he agreed with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on the need for high quality infrastructure that can achieve both economic growth and fiscal sustainability.

Conte was born in a town of some 400 residents in Italy's southern region of Puglia. The expert in civil law graduated from Sapienza University of Rome. He later ran a law firm, while teaching at some universities.

Japan - Prime Minister Shinzo Abe

Abe, who in November is likely to become Japan's longest-serving prime minister, hopes to exhibit his leadership skills and ability to coordinate a diverse group of G-20 leaders ahead of an upper house election this summer.

Since his return to power in 2012 touting his "Abenomics" policy mix, the 64-year-old, who was born into an establishment political family, has been struggling to pull Japan out of chronic deflation. The world's third-largest economy now faces the risk of recession amid escalating U.S.-China trade tensions.

Positioning himself as U.S. President Donald Trump's closest ally among world leaders, the two have played numerous rounds of golf together. During Trump's state visit to Japan in late May, he made efforts to entertain the U.S. leader while broaching difficult issues such as bilateral trade and North Korea.

Abe, a conservative hawk, is seeking to use his political capital to achieve the first-ever revision to Japan's pacifist Constitution, an unfulfilled dream of his late grandfather, former Prime Minister Nobusuke Kishi.

In 2006, Abe became Japan's youngest prime minister in the postwar era but stepped down after a scandal-plagued year due to health problems.

Mexico - President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador


Lopez Obrador secured victory in Mexico's presidential election last year in his third attempt, supported by voters frustrated with corruption-tainted establishment parties.

The 65-year-old, who skipped the G-20 summit, joined the then dominant Institutional Revolutionary Party in 1976 before moving to the Party of the Democratic Revolution.

The former Mexico City mayor became president after launching the leftist National Regeneration Movement, also known by its Spanish acronym MORENA, following his defeat in the 2012 presidential election. He has vowed to eradicate corruption and transform Mexico.

Lopez Obrador, known for his hard-line stance against the United States, is tasked with dealing with the issues of illegal immigrants and free trade negotiations with U.S. President Donald Trump.

Born in Macuspana in the southern state of Tabasco in 1953, the president, widely called by his initials "AMLO," is a baseball fan. He reveres Benito Pablo Juarez Garcia, the former president and national hero.

Russia - President Vladimir Putin

Putin, in his fourth term as president, is a familiar face among world leaders. The 66-year-old former KGB agent has dominated Russia's political scene since 2000 and some call him a "czar."

Under Putin's leadership, Russia has confronted the United States and European countries in recent years that have imposed crippling economic sanctions following Moscow's annexation of Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula in 2014 and its involvement in the Syrian civil war.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will meet with Putin on the fringes of the G-20 summit, with the focus on any progress in bilateral negotiations to conclude a postwar peace treaty, which Tokyo and Moscow have failed to reach due to a long-standing territorial dispute.

Putin, who is known to keep other leaders waiting, may hold talks with U.S. President Donald Trump, amid strained ties over Russia's alleged meddling in the 2016 presidential election.

Putin is known as a dog lover and a judo player who does not hide his appreciation for the Japanese sport. He was born in what is now St. Petersburg in Russia.

Saudi Arabia - Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman

A son of aging King Salman bin Abdulaziz, 33-year-old Mohammed bin Salman is widely regarded as the de facto ruler of Saudi Arabia, having been elevated to heir presumptive to the throne in 2017. He is attending the G-20 summit in place of the king, as he did last year.

The crown prince, also known as MbS, has pushed to liberalize the conservative Muslim nation, including removing a ban on female drivers and limiting the powers of the religious police, a body that has enforced strict morality codes.

He has also sought to diversify the economy past its huge but finite oil reserves such as by attracting investment, but those efforts have hit a snag due to a delay in plans to take state-owned oil company Saudi Aramco public.

The crown prince has faced criticism for military intervention in the conflict in Yemen, which is seen as a proxy war between Saudi Arabia and Iran, while coming under intense scrutiny from the international community over his alleged involvement in the assassination of dissident writer Jamal Khashoggi at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul last year.

The crown prince serves concurrently as deputy prime minister and defense minister of Saudi Arabia, which will host the G-20 summit next year. He is known as a fan of Japanese manga and anime.

South Africa - President Cyril Ramaphosa

Ramaphosa's participation in this year's G-20 summit comes about a month after he was elected to his first full term by the country's National Assembly.

The 66-year-old first took office last year after former President Jacob Zuma was pressured to resign amid graft allegations.

Ramaphosa first came to public attention when he appeared alongside anti-apartheid icon and later President Nelson Mandela when he was making his first public speech in 1990 upon his release from prison.

An anti-apartheid activist himself, Ramaphosa was elected as secretary general of the African National Congress, the country's current ruling party, in 1991.

Ramaphosa retired from politics in 1997 and became a director of an investment company. He was listed as one of the wealthiest people in Africa by Forbes magazine, with an estimated net worth of $450 million as of 2015. He returned to politics in 2012.

After the G-20 summit, Ramaphosa is expected to return to Japan in August for the seventh round of the Tokyo International Conference on African Development, called TICAD, to be held in Yokohama.

South Korea - President Moon Jae In

The 66-year-old has been seeking to establish a role as a mediator in the nuclear standoff between the United States and North Korea. But that has been put to test following the breakdown of talks between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Hanoi in February.

Moon was born on Geoje Island in South Gyeongsang province to poor parents who fled North Korea during the 1950-1953 Korean War, which ended in a cease-fire.

He was arrested twice while attending university, including in 1975 for taking part in protests against the dictatorship of then-President Park Chung Hee.

Before entering politics, Moon served as a human rights lawyer, running a law office in Busan with Roh Moo Hyun who also later became president.

Moon was sworn in as president in May 2017 for a five-year term after his predecessor Park Geun Hye was impeached over a corruption scandal.

His achievements during the past two years in office include improvement in inter-Korean relations, having held talks with Kim three times since last year. But South Korea's ties with Japan have become strained over matters including wartime compensation issues.

Turkey - President Recep Tayyip Erdogan

The 65-year-old president has tightened his grip on power since a constitutional referendum in 2017 that changed Turkey from a parliamentary to a presidential system, with critics slamming his rule as increasingly autocratic.

Erdogan, a soccer player-turned-politician, has led the country for more than 15 years since becoming prime minister in 2003. In 2014, he assumed the presidency, which before was a mostly ceremonial role.

He has cemented his power since a failed coup by a faction of the military in July 2016. He was re-elected last year for another five-year term, with new executive powers endorsed in the constitutional referendum.

Hailing from Istanbul, Erdogan is known as a devout Muslim who does not drink or smoke. When he was mayor of Istanbul in 1997, he was imprisoned for four months for inciting religious hatred after reciting a poem.

Erdogan has held talks with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe a number of times. He has traveled to Japan several times, including on a private visit to watch the 2002 FIFA World Cup.

The United States - President Donald Trump

The 73-year-old president has pursued an "America First" foreign policy since taking office in January 2017, stirring controversy with provocative remarks and tweets.

A real estate developer and television personality once seen as a long-shot Republican candidate for president, Trump is now setting his sights on re-election amid a trade war with China, stalled negotiations on North Korean denuclearization and tensions with Iran over its nuclear deal.

He continues to be dogged by a number of investigations into his 2016 election campaign and personal finances.

Prior to becoming president, Trump, who took control of his father's business in 1971, also hosted reality TV show "The Apprentice," with his catchphrase being "You're Fired."

The president is an avid golfer who often uses the game to conduct business. He is a nonsmoker who loves fast food but abstains from alcohol, preferring to drink Diet Coke.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has developed a personal rapport with Trump, with the two frequently holding talks and playing golf. Trump is visiting Japan again after his trip as a state guest in May.

The European Council - President Donald Tusk

The former prime minister of Poland has been at the helm of the European Union since 2014. His second and final term as president is set to end in November.

In his youth, he was an activist in Poland's "Solidarity" trade union, which became a driving force in the fall of communism in Eastern Europe in 1989. He earned his living as a blue-collar worker for some years until the end of communist rule in Poland.

Tusk was first elected to Poland's lower house in 1991 and served as prime minister from 2007 to 2014, during which Poland continued to maintain economic growth.

In 2014, Tusk became the first member from among the 10 countries that joined the European Union in 2004 to occupy one of the most important posts in Brussels. He was re-elected president of the European Council in 2017.

During the Ukraine crisis, he held a series of talks with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and took a firm stance against Russia, while calling for EU unity.

The 62-year-old is known as an avid football fan.

The European Commission - President Jean-Claude Juncker

Juncker, a 64-year-old former prime minister of Luxembourg, is known as one of the main architects of the Maastricht Treaty signed in 1992 that established the European Union and led to the creation of a common currency, the euro.

Juncker has been politically active from his youth, joining the Christian Social People's Party, which has been a dominant force in Luxembourg politics, in 1974. He was first appointed to a government post at the age of 28 and swiftly rose through the ranks.

He served as Luxembourg prime minister for almost 20 years from 1995 before being elected to the presidency of the European Commission in 2014.

With his term set to end in October, Juncker recently said that one of his major achievements was to have helped keep Greece in the euro zone amid the European debt crisis, while one of his worst failures was to have kept silent ahead of the 2016 Brexit referendum despite what he called "lies" told by campaigners promoting Britain's departure from the European Union.

Juncker earned a master's in law in 1979, but never practiced as a lawyer.

More on G-20:

For sake of G-20 unity, Japan aims to keep conflicts backstage

World leaders in flurry of diplomacy ahead of G-20 summit in Osaka

Osaka ramps up security for G-20 summit

Jun 28, 2019 | KYODO NEWS

Spouses of G-20 leaders visit Kyoto temple

Kyoto  Spouses of the leaders attending the Group of 20 major economies' summit in Osaka visited a famous temple in Japan's former capital on Friday, while their partners were busy discussing how to drive global growth on the first day of the two-day meeting.

A total of 18 spouses, including French President Emmanuel Macron's wife Brigitte, had Japanese lunch and tea in the afternoon in Kyoto, near Osaka. The excursion was hosted by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's wife Akie.

Arriving at Tofuku-ji, a Buddhist temple in the city's Higashiyama Ward, the spouses strolled around its premises and took rickshaws, remaining there beyond the scheduled time.

【全編】G20 大阪サミットが開幕 安倍首相が参加国首脳を出迎え(2019628日)

G20大阪サミット初日 首脳会議特別イベントの模様 

Abe opens G20 summit with focus on free trade

The Yomiuri Shimbun

The first-ever Group of 20 summit meeting hosted by Japan opened Friday at the Intex Osaka exhibition center in Osaka.

Leaders from the major economies in the G20 are discussing issues such as the environment and the world economy, which is becoming increasingly uncertain due to the trade conflict between the United States and China. At a meeting held at noon on Friday, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe called for the maintenance of the free trade system and indicated his willingness for discussions aimed at compiling a leaders’ declaration on Saturday.

The summit is being attended by leaders from 37 countries, regions and international organizations, including U.S. President Donald Trump, Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin. As chair of the summit, Abe welcomed the participants at the venue.

As the first session on the global economy, trade and investment began at noon, Abe said the world economy “is increasingly prone to downside risks” and that “above all, tensions over trade and geopolitics are increasing.”

Abe’s remarks suggested that concerns over the slowdown of the global economy are growing in the face of U.S.-China trade conflict and the current situation in the Middle East.

“We have to send out a strong message for maintaining and strengthening the free, fair and nondiscriminatory trade system,” Abe emphasized.

The prime minister called for the reform of the World Trade Organization, which has been criticized for not functioning properly. He also stressed to leaders the necessity of compiling a new global taxation rule aimed at imposing greater taxes on large information technology companies by next year.

Ahead of the G20 summit, Trump has been stepping up his protectionist stance on trade and other issues. China and European countries have expressed dissatisfaction over the U.S. stance. Japan, as host of the G20 summit, faces a difficult maneuver as it is required to take a position against trade protectionism and at the same time convince the United States of its position.

With the U.S.-China trade row escalating, Trump and Xi are scheduled to meet on Saturday. The meeting is directing attention to whether they can stop their exchange of retaliatory tariffs, which are the largest cause of concern for the world economy.

At the G20, Japan aims to reach an agreement on measures against plastic waste, which causes ocean pollution. Final arrangements are being made to compile an initiative called “Osaka Blue Ocean Vision” aimed at reducing further pollution caused by plastic waste to zero by 2050.

The G20 summit officially started on Friday at noon with a special leaders event on the digital economy. On the first day of the summit, leaders mainly discussed the global economy, trade and investment, and dinner was to be hosted by Abe. On Saturday, the second day of the summit meeting, issues such as climate change, the environment and energy will be discussed.Speech

Pool Photo/ AP

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, center, other leaders and delegates attend a photo session at G20 summit in Osaka on Friday.

Trade in spotlight as G-20 discusses economy in Osaka summit

Leaders from the Group of 20 major economies weighed the risk of a slowing global economy on Friday amid growing trade and geopolitical tensions as a two-day summit began in Osaka under Japan's presidency.

As an escalating U.S.-China trade war looms large, eyes are on whether the G-20 nations -- accounting for about 80 percent of the world's economy -- can agree on the importance of free trade and the rules-based multilateral trading system that has benefited economic growth.

"Trade and geopolitical tensions are intensifying," Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told other G-20 leaders at the outset of the day's session, cautioning that the global economy is facing downside risks.

"I want the G-20 to share a determination to realize growth by employing all policy tools," Abe said. "We should send out a strong message."

Abe said he is "deeply concerned" about the current global trade situation, saying restrictive measures will not benefit any country, in an apparent reference to tit-for-tat tariff hikes between the United States and China.

Abe faces the tough task of projecting a united G-20 front despite apparent disagreements particularly over contentious issues such as trade and climate change.

At the summit that will also address environmental issues, the G-20 leaders are expected to agree to end the dumping of plastic waste in the world's oceans by 2050, sources familiar with the matter said Friday. The goal will likely be included in a post-meeting joint statement.

Bilateral talks scheduled for Saturday between U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping have already gripped the G-20, as the tariff battle between the world's two largest economies has threatened to darken the economic outlook given the integrated nature of global supply chains.

Rising tensions in the Middle East amid a U.S.-Iran standoff over a 2015 nuclear deal have also become a concern for the world economy and sent oil prices higher.

Major central banks, including the U.S. Federal Reserve and the Bank of Japan, have recently hinted at additional stimulus if needed, even as the G-20 finance chiefs, meeting earlier in the month, said growth is expected to pick up moderately later this year.

As digital data can both be an economic growth driver and a security risk, Japan is making the case for better and proper use of it through what is called the Osaka track, a forum for rule making in ecommerce and other areas.

The G-20 leaders will also take up reform of the World Trade Organization, a symbol of multilateral free trade that has come under attack since U.S. President Trump took office."We are working closely with the United States and Japan as well as China and others on reforming the World Trade Organization and creating a level playing field," European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said at a press conference on Friday.

"This can only be done with the G-20 as a core group," Juncker said, referring to the need to tackle issues such as unfair industrial subsidies.

Under the WTO, launched in 1995, countries negotiate trade rules. It also provides a dispute settlement mechanism.

The United States has taken aim at the WTO's failure to enforce its rules on China, blocking appointments to its appellate body.

The G-20 is seen as fit for policy coordination in times of emergency situations such as the 2008 financial crisis.

More than a decade later, it also needs to discuss ways to foster economic growth by promoting digital trade and making better use of innovations such as artificial intelligence.

The G-20 consists of Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Britain, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, Turkey, the United States and the European Union.

首相、各国首脳出迎え 大阪G20サミットで

Japan, U.S. affirm alliance after Trump revives security treaty flak

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and U.S. President Donald Trump agreed Friday to bolster the "unwavering" bilateral alliance after Trump earlier revived his criticism of what he sees as a one-sided security treaty.

Meeting for the third month in a row and just ahead of the two-day Group of 20 summit in Osaka, the two leaders also agreed to work closely in dealing with regional issues such as North Korea and accelerate ongoing bilateral trade talks to achieve results at "an early date," according to a Japanese government official.

"These frequent visits between the leaders in such a short period of time are evidence of the robust Japan-U.S. alliance," Abe said at the outset of their meeting.

While the two leaders have been known for enjoying personal rapport, Japanese and U.S. government officials have recently been scrambling to deny a report by Bloomberg news agency earlier this week that Trump mused to confidants about withdrawing from the security treaty, a key part of the postwar Japan-U.S. relationship.

Trump even appeared to double down on his arguments when he openly showed his discontent with the treaty on Wednesday on Fox Business Network. "If Japan is attacked, we will fight World War III. We will go in and we will protect them and we will fight with our lives and with our treasure...but if we're attacked, Japan doesn't have to help us at all. They can watch it on a Sony television, the attack," he said.

The remarks are similar to those Trump voiced during the 2016 presidential campaign, but political observers have speculated that the reason he may have revived the argument was to gain leverage over the trade negotiations by reminding Japan of its heavy reliance on defense.

In the latest effort to play down the concerns, Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Yasutoshi Nishimura, who briefed reporters on the Abe-Trump meeting, said, "There were no such discussions at all on reviewing the Japan-U.S. security treaty."

"The two leaders agreed to further strengthen the unwavering Japan-U.S. alliance," he added. But at the same time Nishimura admitted that Abe did not ask Trump directly about his intentions behind the remarks criticizing the long-standing treaty.

The White House separately said they "confirmed their intent to deepen and expand U.S.-Japan alliance cooperation around the globe."

The security pact requires the United States to come to the defense of Japan in the event of an attack. Around 50,000 U.S. troops are stationed in Japan, which has renounced war under its postwar Constitution, enabling the United States to respond rapidly to contingencies in the Asia-Pacific region, including North Korea.

During the 35-minute talks with Trump, Abe also called for diplomatic efforts among relevant parties to ease rising tensions in the Middle East stemming from the confrontation between the United States and Iran over a global nuclear deal reached in 2015.

With Japan long enjoying amicable ties with Iran, Abe made a two-day visit there earlier in the month in an apparent bid to serve as a bridge between Washington and Tehran.

But tensions spiked after two oil tankers, one operated by a Japanese company, were attacked near the Strait of Hormuz, a critical route for oil shipments from the region. Trump also came close to launching a military strike against Iran, which downed a U.S. drone last week.

On North Korea, Abe and Trump agreed to continue to fully implement the U.N. Security Council resolutions imposed on the country for its nuclear and missile programs, according to Nishimura.

Trump reiterated his "full support" to Abe's resolve to meet North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in the hope of settling the issue of Pyongyang's past abduction of Japanese nationals, he said.

While the Japanese side appeared to be largely focusing on highlighting the stable relationship of the two allies, Trump suggested at the beginning of the meeting that his attention is on trade, and hailed the growing U.S. investments by Japan automakers.

Trump and Abe agreed that their bilateral trade deal should benefit both sides, although the timeline of when to reach a conclusion was not discussed, according to Nishimura.

The negotiations at the ministerial level started in mid-April as part of Trump's push to reduce his country's large trade deficit and increase jobs. Trump again touched on the deficit issue during the latest meeting, according to a Japanese government source. The two countries previously agreed to reach a deal after Japan's House of Councillors election in July.

As the chairman of the G-20 gathering, Abe sought cooperation from Trump so that members can come up with a powerful message toward achieving sustainable growth of the world economy and other global challenges, saying that those cannot be addressed without the two countries working together.

Jun 28, 2019 | KYODO NEWS

[President Trump visit to Japan day 3] Banquet at the Imperial Palace

UN chief urges G20 to make equitable financial reforms

The Associated Press

OSAKA (AP) — The U.N. chief is urging G-20 leaders to take action on equitable and stable reforms to strengthen the global financial safety net and increase the global economy’s resilience.

U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said in a letter to leaders gathered in Osaka, Japan, for the two-day summit beginning Friday that while the world has made progress fixing some big problems it’s not happening fast enough or shared by all countries.

Guterres said that while there are good plans and vision, what’s needed are “accelerated actions, not more deliberations.”

He says that fast and equal economic growth should be constructed so that people who live in “the ‘rust belts’ of the world are not left behind.”

In Japan, Trump pushes allies on trade before meeting Putin

The Associated Press

OSAKA (AP) — President Trump opened his most consequential trip of the year by plunging into a series of high-stakes meetings at an international summit in Japan on Friday by pushing allies on both trade and defense spending.

Trump met first with the G20 summit’s host, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. He will follow that with talks with the leaders of India and Germany before holding his first meeting with Russia’s Vladimir Putin since the special counsel found extensive evidence of Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. election.

“We’ll be discussing trade, we’ll be discussing military,” among other items, Trump said as he sat across from Abe for their discussions. He joked about his previous trip to Japan, in May, when he presented an award to a sumo wrestling champion in Tokyo.

“Everybody’s talking about it all over the world,” Trump said.

Moments earlier, as Abe officially welcomed Trump to the summit, the president waved over his daughter Ivanka Trump and son-in-law Jared Kushner, both senior White House aides, to stand with him for the official welcome photo. Trump will then meet with India’s prime minister, Narendra Modi, whom he warned on Twitter the day before about tariffs on U.S. goods, and then later German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

But the day’s main event will be Trump’s first public meeting with Putin since the Helsinki summit in which Trump refused to side with U.S. intelligence agencies over his Russian counterpart.

Trump said in advance he expected a “very good conversation” with Putin but told reporters that “what I say to him is none of your business.” His aides have grown worried that Trump could use the meeting to once again attack Robert Mueller’s probe on the world stage, particularly since the special counsel now has a date to testify before Congress next month.

Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer pressed the president to directly challenge the Russian leader on election interference and send a signal “not merely to Putin but to all of our adversaries that interfering with our election is unacceptable, and that they will pay a price — a strong price — for trying.”

Trump has complained in recent days that the U.S. military alliance with Japan is one-sided, said Germany was taking advantage of the U.S. on support for NATO and tweeted that India’s tariffs on the U.S. “must be withdrawn!” Trump also meets Friday with Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro, whom the American leader has come to view as a populist leader in his own image.

Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga on Thursday brushed off Trump’s complaints that the Japan-U.S. security pact unfairly puts the burden only on the U.S. side, calling Trump’s remarks “irrelevant” and saying the obligations are balanced.S

Japan PM Abe highlights "robust" alliance in talks with Trump

Osaka Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Friday highlighted the strength of the alliance with the United States as he met President Donald Trump, in an apparent effort to deflect the president's recent criticism of what he sees as a one-sided security treaty.

Noting that the two are meeting for the third month in a row, Abe said at the outset of their talks in Osaka, "These frequent visits between the leaders in such a short period of time are evidence of the robust Japan-U.S. alliance."

Abe also sought cooperation from Trump to achieve results from the two-day Group of 20 summit that is set to start later in the day in Osaka under his chairmanship, saying that global issues cannot be addressed without the two working together.

Trump, meanwhile, suggested that his attention is largely on trade and defense equipment purchases, while hailing the growing U.S. investments by Japan automakers

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Friday highlighted the strength of the alliance with the United States as he met President Donald Trump, in an apparent effort to deflect the president's recent criticism of what he sees as a one-sided security treaty.

Noting that the two are meeting for the third month in a row, Abe said at the outset of their talks in Osaka, "These frequent visits between the leaders in such a short period of time are evidence of the robust Japan-U.S. alliance."

Abe also sought cooperation from Trump to achieve results from the two-day Group of 20 summit that is set to start later in the day in Osaka under his chairmanship, saying that global issues cannot be addressed without the two working together.

Trump, meanwhile, suggested that his attention is largely on trade and defense equipment purchases, while hailing the growing U.S. investments by Japan automakers

World leaders in flurry of diplomacy ahead of G-20 summit in Osaka

Leaders from the Group of 20 economies gathering in Osaka began engaging in a flurry of diplomacy on Thursday, a day before Japan hosts what could be a difficult summit amid an escalating U.S.-China trade war.

To lay the groundwork for a successful two-day summit to tackle pressing global challenges, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who is hoping to emphasize G-20 unity rather than divisions, held a series of bilateral meetings with his counterparts, including Chinese President Xi Jinping and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The summit comes as the world grapples with trade friction, rising tensions in the Middle East and global warming. The relevance of the G-20, set up to ensure policy coordination in times of crisis, has been increasingly in the spotlight.

For his part, Abe wants the G-20, accounting for about 80 percent of the world's economy, to promote free trade and realize sustainable economic growth through the use of digital data and innovation.

"I'll work to make sure that the G-20 can send out a strong message," Abe told reporters before leaving Tokyo.

Trade is a hot-button issue for the G-20 as U.S. President Donald Trump has been taking steps to protect domestic industry by imposing higher tariffs.

On Thursday, Abe discussed close coordination with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and European Council President Donald Tusk.

Tusk told Abe during the meeting that the upcoming summit will be a difficult one amid differing views on such issues as trade and climate change, according to a senior Japanese government official.

The G-20 framework has been shaken as Trump pushes his "America First" agenda and prefers bilateral deals. Months of tit-for-tat tariff hikes between Washington and Beijing have rattled financial markets and raised global economic concerns.

While the United States has shied away from multilateral frameworks such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement, Japan and the European Union have stepped up efforts to promote free trade by signing an economic partnership agreement.

On Thursday, security was tight around the summit venue and hotels to be used by foreign leaders and delegates.

Traffic restrictions are in place, and around 32,000 police officers are expected to be mobilized, with all public elementary, junior high and high schools closed in the western Japan city.

Other leaders who arrived in Osaka on Thursday included Trump, British Prime Minister Theresa May, Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman and South Korean President Moon Jae In.

Trump got off Air Force One as rain fell in Osaka and was greeted by Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono.

Trump's trip comes about a month after Japan received him as a state guest and Abe showcased the strength of the two countries' alliance. Ahead of this visit, however, the U.S. president questioned the fairness of that long-standing alliance in a Fox TV interview.

Xi, visiting Japan for the first time since assuming his post in 2013, is scheduled to hold a much-hyped meeting with Trump on the G-20 sidelines. Before that, Xi also held talks with South Korea's Moon.

The G-20 consists of Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Britain, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, Turkey, the United States and the European Union.

【報ステ】G20前に日中首脳会談 来春に訪日要請(19/06/27)

トランプ氏、大阪入り G20、日米会談は28

中国の習近平主席、就任以来初めての来日 G20に出席(2019627

For sake of G-20 unity, Japan aims to keep conflicts backstage



両陛下が仏大統領夫妻をお出迎え 通訳なしの仏語で(19/06/27)

G20 JAPAN 2019  

Osaka,  Osaka Pref.  Summit  Meeting June 28 to 29, 2019

G20 Summit & Ministerial Meetings to be Held for the First Time in Japan

On the 28th and 29th of June 2019, the leaders of the G20 will gather in Osaka as Japan hosts its first ever G20 Summit. Concurrent with the Summit meeting, the Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors’ Meeting, the Foreign Ministers’ Meeting, and other ministerial meetings will also be held at eight different locations throughout Japan.

During its presidency of the G20 Summit, the Japanese government is determined to carry out strong leadership in advancing discussions toward resolving the myriad issues now facing the international community.

At the same time, the G20 Summit is a perfect opportunity for people from all over the world to see and experience not only a newly revitalized and transforming Japanwhich is thanks to booming corporate profits and a wave of inbound investment as a result of bold regulatory reforms and other stimulus measures—but also the wide-ranging appeal of the various regions that will host these consequential discussions.

All Nine Host Cities Represent Unique Aspects of Japan



Following the successful completion of the G20 Buenos Aires Summit on December 1, 2018, Japan has finally assumed the G20 presidency for the very first time. Next year, Japan will host the G20 Osaka Summit on June 28 and 29, 2019. In addition to the G20 members, we will also welcome leaders of invited guest countries and head of invited guest international organizations. This will be the largest summit meeting that Japan has ever hosted.

Osaka will be the venue for hosting the G20, the “premier forum for international economic cooperation,” which gathers and brings together many developed countries and emerging countries with growing presence in the international economy. Osaka has historically prospered as a commercial hub and its unique tradition and culture, including food culture, has recently gained much reputation home and abroad. Moreover, Osaka has thrived as a merchant city and has constantly sought to take in new ideas. It is a place where the spirit and willingness to take on new challenges has been nurtured, and was also chosen to host the Osaka-Kansai Expo in 2025.

At the Osaka Summit, Japan is determined to lead global economic growth by promoting free trade and innovation, achieving both economic growth and reduction of disparities, and contributing to the development agenda and other global issues with the SDGs at its core. Through these efforts, Japan seeks to realize and promote a free and open, inclusive and sustainable, "human-centered future society."

In addition, we will lead discussions on the supply of global commons for realizing global growth such as quality infrastructure and global health. As the presidency, we will exert strong leadership in discussions aimed towards resolving global issues such as climate change and ocean plastic waste.

Furthermore, we will discuss how to address the digital economy from an institutional perspective and issues that arise from an aging society. We will introduce Japan’s efforts, including the productivity revolution amid a “Society 5.0” era, towards achieving a society where all individuals are actively engaged.

We will also be hosting related Ministerial meetings starting from the Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors Meeting in Fukuoka,

Agriculture Ministers’ Meeting in Niigata,

Ministerial Meeting on Trade and Digital Economy in Tsukuba, Ibaraki,

Ministerial Meeting on Energy Transitions and Global Environment for Sustainable Growth in Karuizawa, Nagano,

Labour and Employment Ministers’ Meeting in Matsuyama, Ehime,

Health Ministers’ Meeting in Okayama,

Tourism Ministers’ Meeting in Kutchan, Hokkaido,

and Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Nagoya, Aichi.

There will be many delegations and journalists from all over the world who will be visiting Japan on the occasion of the Osaka Summit and these Ministerial meetings. We will take this as an opportunity to exhibit Japan’s "Omotenashi" spirit (hospitality) and introduce the unique aspects and attractiveness of Japan and the host cities to the world.

With great support from you all, I am determined to lead the Osaka Summit towards great success.

Summit on Financial Markets and the World Economy

The official name of the G20 Summit is formally known as the “Summit on Financial Markets and the World Economy,” and is an international forum convened annually. The name “Summit” originates from its English definition, and refers to the highest point of a mountain. Therefore, the word “summit” most often indicates a meeting between heads of state or government, who represent the highest political level of a country.

The G20 Summit is the “premier forum for international economic cooperation” (agreed by leaders at the Pittsburgh Summit in September 2009) and maintains great influence over the global economy, with its members representing more than 80% of the world’s GDP. The primary agenda addressed at the Summit meetings is focused on issues related to the global economy. However, the discussions in recent Summits have also included issues such as trade and investment, development, climate change and energy, employment, digitalization, counter-terrorism, as well as migration and refugees.

The G20 Leaders’ Summit was established in response to the global financial crisis that occurred in the wake of the collapse of the Lehman Brothers. The existing G20 Meeting of Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors, which is a forum represented by major developed and emerging countries, was upgraded to the head of state level, and the inaugural G20 Summit was held in Washington D.C. in November 2008. From thereon, Summit meetings were held semiannually until 2010 and annually from 2011 onwards.

The participants are Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Republic of Korea, Republic of South Africa, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, United Kingdom, United States of America, and European Union (EU). In addition, leaders of invited guest countries and representatives of invited international organizations participate in the Summit. (Please click here for the list of participating nations and international organizations for the G20 Osaka Summit.)

G20 JAPAN 2019  Osaka,  Osaka Pref.  Summit  Meeting June 28 to 29, 2019




In conjunction with the hosting of the G20 Osaka Summit, the Government Exhibition Space was set up in the International Media Center (IMC) in INTEX Osaka. Exhibits spotlighting the attractions and charms of Japan will be open for viewing from 8am on June 27 (Thursday).

Innovation possesses the capacity to resolve a wide range of issues that have a major impact on the world economy. Japan will become the first nation in the world to prove and demonstrate that innovation can maintain growth despite a declining population. At the same time, innovation will also be essential in solving global-scale environmental issues in order to allow the realization of sustainable growth. In this Japan Innovation Lounge, we introduce revolutionary Japanese technologies and ideas that will help to create a new era which realizes a virtuous cycle of environmental preservation and growth, and which will be richly beneficial both to humans and to the planet.

The expansive Exhibition Space introduces Japanese technology and products related to each category representing the Summit agenda.In addition to the exhibits complementing the G20 agenda-“Society × Innovation, “Health × Innovation,” “Marine Plastic Litter × Innovation,” “Energy × Innovation,” and “Development Cooperation × Innovation” -the space includes categories featuring “Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games,” “Recovery from March 11th, 2011,” “Japan Tourism,” and “Tradition.” The total of some 50 displays offer entertaining education in an array of formats, from panels and models to videos and hands-on presentations.

Adjacent to the Government Exhibition Space is an area dedicated to the food cultures of Osaka and Japan, with a Live Kitchen where visitors can view chefs create a variety of dishes, as well as a tasting area offering sips of Japanese sake and other treats.

Reference: International Media Center


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