Speed Reads

Trade Wars

Trump arrives in Osaka for G-20 summit amid a growing list of trade fights

President Trump arrived in Japan on Thursday evening, local time, for what is shaping up to be a high-stakes and contentious Group of 20 summit in Osaka. Trump is scheduled to meet one-on-one with nine world leaders, starting with Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison, but observers are most interested in his meeting Saturday with Chinese President Xi Jinping.

Trump insisted on the meeting and has said if he and Xi don't restart trade talks, he will levy tariffs on the remaining untaxed $300 billion in Chinese imports. China will ask that Trump drop its ban on telecom firm Huawei Technologies and scale back its demands for China to buy even more U.S. exports, The Wall Street Journal reports. The U.S. believes China scuttled the last round of talks in April and is expecting China to make the first move to restart them. Xi, under pressure from nationalists at home, is not expected to offer Trump any large concessions in Japan.

Trump will also meet with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who is in a new trade dispute with Trump's administration, and the president is expected to face pushback from European leaders over his skepticism of climate change. Trump demanded in a tweet that Modi remove reciprocal tariffs on 30 U.S. products, and in an interview with Fox Business on Wednesday, Trump confirmed a report that he is considering withdrawing the U.S. from its foundational treaty with Japan. "If Japan is attacked, we will fight World War III ... with our lives and with our treasure," Trump said. "If we're attacked, Japan doesn't have to help us at all" and "can watch it on the Sony television, okay, the attack."