Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau arrives at an official welcome at the G7 summit in Carbis Bay, Cornwall, England.(AP)
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau arrives at an official welcome at the G7 summit in Carbis Bay, Cornwall, England.(AP)

Trudeau leads G7 discussion on China challenge, pushes for unified approach

  • The issue of China’s economic assertiveness and political belligerence also dominated a brief conversation between Trudeau and Biden on the sidelines of the G7 summit.
By hindustantimes.com | Edited by Kunal Gaurav, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON JUN 13, 2021 04:23 PM IST

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau led a discussion at the G7 Leaders' Summit 2021 on Saturday over how to respond to China’s growing economic clout. The leaders of the seven richest economies arrived at a consensus to offer developing nations to counter China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), which is seen by many as a “debt trap”. India has vehemently objected to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), a flagship project under BRI, as it runs through Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.

"Trudeau's message today was that we really need to work to build a consensus on a unified approach to the challenges that China presents all of us. We have to show solidarity as a group and show action as a group as well," news agency Reuters quoted a person familiar with the discussions as saying.

During a background press call on US President Joe Biden’s meetings at the G7 summit, a senior US official said that the administration is working to respond to non-market economic practices that are objectionable in a global economy and pursuing an affirmative infrastructure initiative that’s high standards and transparent. The White House said that the G7 leaders hope the Build Back Better World (B3W) initiative, the plan to counter China’s BRI, will provide a transparent infrastructure partnership to help narrow the $40 trillion needed by developing nations by 2035.

Also Read | Explained: How G7 counter to China's Belt and Road Initiative will benefit India

While the G7 leaders agreed on the infrastructure plan, reports suggest that there was no immediate consensus on how forcefully they should call out Beijing over the alleged human rights abuses. Canada, Britain and France largely endorsed Biden's more hawkish stance, but Germany, Italy and the European Union showed more hesitancy, reported Associated Press.

The issue of China’s economic assertiveness and political belligerence also reportedly dominated a brief conversation between Trudeau and Biden on the sidelines of the G7 Leaders’ Summit 2021. According to a CBC report, Trudeau also raised the issue of two Canadians detained by China in what is widely believed to be retaliatory action for the arrest of Huawei Technologies chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou.

(With inputs from agencies)

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