Merkel hopes to address trade issues with Trump at G7 in May

by Reuters
Monday, 20 March 2017 13:29 GMT

HANOVER, Germany, March 20 (Reuters) - German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Monday a G7 leaders' summit of the world's leading economies in May was a good opportunity to address differences with U.S. President Donald Trump on how to secure free trade while making commerce fairer.

"Of course, the views are different and this will not change through one meeting," Merkel said of differences with the U.S. administration on trade issues that surfaced during her talks with Trump in Washington last week.

"But the president said clearly during our talks that he is against isolationism and for free trade, but fair trade," Merkel told a news conference at the CeBIT technology fair with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

"And now we need to spell out what this means for each of our countries. I think the G7 is a good opportunity but I can't say whether we would be able to solve all problems."

G7 leaders meet in Italy in May and trade is likely to be one of the thorniest issues at the table. Abe said Japan and the European Union must defend free trade and try to bring the United States on board. (Reporting by Andreas Rinke; Writing by Joseph Nasr; Editing by Paul Carrel)

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