Over the weekend, the world's top finance officials gathered to talk about several issues that could affect global trading. One of the participants is President Donald Trump's Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.
At the meeting, the finance officials have been looking forward to hearing about the plans of the Trump administration regarding the country's future trade deals. The reaction is understandable, especially following the United States president's order to end the country's participation in the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement and renegotiate the terms of the North American Free Trade Agreement.
However, participants in the meeting of the Group of 20 major economies claimed that Mnuchin had come to the gathering unprepared, Bloomberg News reported. The U.S. Treasury secretary did not offer any clarifications on how Trump's "America First" initiative will work with the rules of the World Trade Organization system, according to the report.
Mnuchin did not actively participate in discussions during the meeting, according to sources. However, he did read from a prepared statement, the content of which was not made public as the meeting was private.
Reuters reported separately that G20 officials decided to let Mnuchin talk freely during the meeting. The finance officials did nothing to challenge the Treasury secretary's protectionist stance and his views on climate change.
The G20 officials are hoping that the Trump administration will change its tune regarding protectionism and climate change, so they are giving Mnuchin time to adjust. Pierre Moscovici, European Commission Economic Affairs Minister, said the Trump administration is yet to offer a clear view on its stance regarding trade.
Trump had threatened to impose 35 percent border tax to German carmakers that plan to import cars made outside of the U.S. into the country, Jobs & Hire previously reported. The warning is part of Trump's agenda to boost manufacturing in the U.S. in order to create more jobs in the country.