- Trump’s Paris Exit Leaves Him Isolated From C-Suites to Capitals
The response to President Donald Trump’s announcement he was exiting the Paris climate accord and wanted to renegotiate on his terms was immediate: The leaders of France, Germany and Italy said no.
On Wall Street, corporate executives pilloried the businessman president. Goldman Sachs’ CEO tweeted for the first time, calling the move a setback for the world. Tesla Inc.’s Elon Musk and Bob Iger of Walt Disney Co. quit a White House advisory council in protest.
Even the mayor of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania — a city Trump highlighted as a beneficiary of his decision to turn his back on the global pact — vowed to abide by the Paris agreement.
Trump’s decision leaves him more alienated than ever, isolated on the world stage and increasingly embattled at home.
Coming against the backdrop of sprawling probes into ties between Russia and Trump’s campaign, the backlash threatens to sap the president’s power when he needs it most to advance domestic priorities such as tax reform and a health care overhaul while confronting an increasingly bellicose North Korea.
It’s a dramatic change in fortunes for the president after just 133 days in office. Business leaders no longer seem to fear Trump’s tweets; foreign leaders have moved from attempts to find rapport to direct confrontation.
Consider that in earlier days, a tweet about Ford Motor Co. shipping U.S. jobs to Mexico prompted the automaker to announce it was abandoning plans to build a $1.6 billion plant there.
Days after his election, Trump called the top executive of United Technologies Corp. and told him not to move jobs from a Carrier factory in Indianapolis to Mexico. Carrier partially relented, agreeing to keep 1,100 jobs in the U.S. in exchange for $7 million in tax breaks and incentives from the state. (Even so, 1,300 jobs are still going to Mexico.)
And in her first visit with Trump in Washington, German Chancellor Angela Merkel gamely tried to shake Trump’s hand during a photo opportunity, offering an optimistic assessment of the meeting despite the president’s persistent criticisms of her country.
“I’ve always said it’s much, much better to talk to one another and not about one another, and I think our conversation proved this,” she said afterwards.
There is none of that fear and trembling now.
After Trump’s announcement on Paris, Ford issued a statement asserting that “we believe climate change is real and remain deeply committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions.” Company chairman Bill Ford, the man Trump once described as “my friend,” broke with the president over his executive order on immigration. And Ford still employs more than 7,000 workers in Mexico.
Although Carrier hasn’t announced a change to its plans, other companies are moving production south. And foreign leaders now game out how to try to one-up the president.
In his first meeting with Trump, French President Emmanuel Macron squeezed Trump’s hand so hard that the American’s knuckles turned white. And when the two chatted before cameras, Macron spoke only French. (He switched to English for his remarks with U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May).
After Trump’s announcement on Paris, Macron tweeted, “Make our planet great again,” and assured American scientists, engineers, entrepreneurs and “responsible citizens” they could find “a second homeland” in France.
Trump’s first foreign trip as president left fellow members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization unsettled and wary, as well. Trump omitted any clear commitment to the alliance’s pledge of collective defense, leaving allies uncertain whether the U.S. would come to their aid if attacked.
Afterwards, unlike her White House visit, Merkel didn’t extol the benefits of discussion.
She told a beer-hall rally in Munich that Europe “really must take our fate into our own hands,” adding “this is what I have experienced in the last few days.”
Former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said the combined weight of Trump’s NATO speech and his decision to leave the Paris agreement mark “the sad demise of a 70-year era of American global leadership.”
” ‘America First’ policies are threatening our strategic interests and eroding our moral standing in the world,” Panetta said in a statement.
To be sure, the Republican voters that elected Trump to the White House have not turned away from the president. Among Republicans, 87 percent say they approve of the job Trump is doing, according to Gallup’s most recent weekly poll. Trump’s job approval has fallen just slightly, from 45 percent just after his inauguration to 41 percent.
And congressional leaders upon whom Trump depends to advance his agenda endorsed his action. House Speaker Paul Ryan called the Paris agreement “a raw deal for America” and commended the decision. And Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, a Republican from the coal-state of Kentucky, was more blunt: “I applaud President Trump and his administration for dealing yet another significant blow to the Obama administration’s assault on domestic energy production and jobs.”
The tone of Trump’s Rose Garden speech Thursday was unapologetic, evoking the inaugural address in which the president angrily lashed out at other countries playing the U.S. for a fool and vowed that “from this day forward, it’s going to be only America first.”
“The Paris agreement handicaps the United States economy in order to win praise from the very foreign capitals and global activists that have long sought to gain wealth at our country’s expense,” Trump said. “We don’t want other leaders and other countries laughing at us anymore.”
Trump did make an offer to renegotiate the Paris accord, but that was quickly rejected. Merkel, Macron and Italian President Sergio Mattarella issued a statement insisting that the agreement was “irreversible” and “cannot be renegotiated.”
And after the president said he was taking action to put the interests of Youngstown, Ohio; Detroit, Michigan; and Pittsburgh above those of Paris, Bill Peduto, Pittsburgh’s mayor, shot back that the city needed no such help: “I can assure you that we will follow the guidelines of the Paris agreement for our people, our economy and future.”
China and EU Seek Partnership: Xi Jinping Proposes Key Trade Alliance
Chinese President Xi Jinping expressed his desire for China and the European Union (EU) to become key trade partners and foster trust in supply chains, during a meeting with EU leaders in Beijing.
The talks marked the first in-person summit between the two sides in four years and addressed a range of economic concerns, including data flows and market access.
Xi emphasized China’s commitment to high-quality development and opening up, positioning the EU as a crucial partner in economic and trade cooperation.
He envisioned the EU as a trusted collaborator in industrial and supply chain cooperation, aiming for mutual benefits and win-win results.
The summit delved into longstanding issues, such as efforts by Europe to “de-risk” its supply chains and the EU’s anti-subsidies investigation into Chinese-made electric vehicles.
China criticized the investigation, urging the EU to avoid using it for “trade protectionism.”
Xi called for the elimination of interference between China and the EU, a statement likely directed at the United States, which has taken actions, including enlisting the Netherlands, to curb China’s development of high-end semiconductors.
The EU leaders, Ursula von der Leyen and Charles Michel, described their conversation with Xi as “good and candid.”
They discussed the main challenges amid increasing geopolitical frictions, emphasizing a commitment to balanced trade relations and pledging to enhance people-to-people exchanges.
During the meeting, Italy formally informed China of its exit from the Belt and Road Initiative, highlighting ongoing strains between the EU and China.
Xi discussed Belt and Road with EU leaders, expressing a willingness to connect it with the EU’s Global Gateway infrastructure plan.
However, deep issues remain, including Russia’s war in Ukraine, trade imbalances, and Chinese overcapacity exported to Europe.
Jens Eskelund, president of the European Union Chamber of Commerce in China, stressed the need to address these issues to foster a positive relationship between Beijing and Brussels.
UAE Commits $30 Billion as COP28 Climate Talks Kick Off in Dubai
Nigeria Eyes BRICS Membership within Two Years as Foreign Minister Emphasizes Strategic Alignment
In a strategic move towards global economic collaboration, Nigeria is aspiring to join the BRICS group of nations within the next two years.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Yusuf Tuggar, affirmed that Nigeria is open to aligning itself with groups that demonstrate good intentions, well-meaning goals, and clearly defined objectives.
Tuggar stated, “Nigeria has come of age to decide for itself who her partners should be and where they should be; being multiple aligned is in our best interest.”
He emphasized the need for Nigeria to be part of influential groups like BRICS and the G-20, citing criteria such as population and economy size that position Nigeria as a natural candidate.
BRICS, comprising Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa, stands as a formidable bloc of emerging market powers.
In a recent move to expand its influence, BRICS invited six additional nations, including Saudi Arabia, Iran, Egypt, Argentina, Ethiopia, and the United Arab Emirates, to join the group.
Nigeria, as Africa’s largest economy, has been absent from the BRICS alliance, prompting discussions on the potential economic and political advantages the bloc could offer the country.
Analysts have noted that BRICS membership could provide Nigeria with significant leverage on the global stage.
Vice President Kashim Shettima clarified that Nigeria did not apply for BRICS membership after the bloc’s announcement of new members in August.
Shettima emphasized the principled approach of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, highlighting a commitment to consensus building in decisions related to international partnerships.
As Nigeria eyes BRICS membership, the move is seen as a strategic step towards enhancing its global economic and diplomatic influence.
Business3 weeks ago
Nigeria’s Logistics Sector Holds Untapped N3tn Potential, Says Courier and Logistics Management Institute
Black Market Rate4 weeks ago
Black Market Exchange Rate Today 14th November 2023
News4 weeks ago
Millionaire Powerplay Limited Unveils Unprecedented Odds in American Lotto’s Instant Cashless Payout
Forex3 weeks ago
Black Market Exchange Rate Today 16th November 2023
Forex4 weeks ago
Black Market Exchange Rate Today 10th November 2023
Black Market Rate3 weeks ago
Black Market Exchange Rate Today 21st November 2023
Telecommunications3 weeks ago
Airtel Africa Announces Interim Dividend Amidst Robust Half-Year Performance
Naira4 weeks ago
N-Power Dismisses Fake Recruitment Reports, Highlights Ongoing Payment Resolutions