Archive for the ‘British Prime Minister Gordon Brown’ Category

China Cancels EU Summit; Economic Turndown Worries Everyone

November 27, 2008

The head of France’s business lobby said Thursday she is “worried” about the trade implications of China’s decision to pull out of an upcoming China-European Union summit.

The EU-China summit was planned for Monday in the French city of Lyon. On the sidelines, around 150-200 Chinese business executives had been expected to meet with European counterparts at an event organized by the French employers lobby Medef.

China called off the meeting, however, in protest at French President Nicolas Sarkozy long-awaited meeting with Tibet‘s exiled Buddhist leader Dalai Lama.

Medef’s President Laurence Parisot called China’s decision “a real shame.”

“This worries me for French companies,” Parisot told the Associated Press.

“I don’t understand what motivated the Chinese authorities,” he said, noting that the U.S. President George W. Bush, British Prime Minister Gordon Brown and German Chancellor Angela Merkel met with the Tibetan leader without provoking such a reaction.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang hinted that his government may be looking at economic reprisals as well.

“Since France has major interests in China, since the French leader repeatedly says that he takes China as a major strategic partner, then why is he doing this?” he asked at a news conference Thursday in Beijing.

“This is exactly where we feel confused and where the Chinese government and people express strong dissatisfaction.”

Pulling out of the summit suggests that countering criticism on Tibet is a bigger priority for China’s communist leaders than working with the EU and nations like France on solutions to the global financial crisis.

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http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20081127/ap_on_bi_
ge/eu_france_china_trade_1

China: Protecting domestic economy is top priority

November 11, 2008

China’s government indicated Tuesday it would resist pressure to contribute to a global bailout fund, saying that ensuring the country’s economic stability is the most important step it can take to tackle the financial crisis.

President Hu Jintao is due to attend next weekend’s summit in Washington of leaders from 20 major economies to discuss a response to the crisis. British Prime Minister Gordon Brown has called on China, which has nearly $2 trillion in reserves, and oil-rich Middle Eastern nations to fund the bulk of an increase in an IMF bailout fund.

Associated Press

“We should put our own house in order and we should stabilize our own financial market and maintain market order,” said a foreign ministry spokesman, Qin Gang. “I believe this is the most effective contribution China can make to tackling this financial crisis. It will help to maintain the sound and steady development of the world economy.”

Graphic charting China's consumer price index, which hit ... 
Graphic charting China’s consumer price index, which hit a 17th-month low of 4.0 percent in October(AFP/null)

China, the world’s fourth-largest economy, unveiled a 4 trillion yuan ($586 billion) stimulus package Sunday, which Premier Wen Jiabao said was its “biggest contribution to the world.”

The plan calls for higher spending through 2010 on airports, highways and other infrastructure, more aid to the poor and farmers and tax cuts for exporters.

Economic growth slowed to 9 percent in the last quarter, down from last year’s stunning 11.9 percent rate and the slowest growth in five years. Export orders have fallen sharply as global demand weakens, leading to layoffs and factory closures.

Obama speaks with 9 world leaders

November 7, 2008

President-elect Obama accepted congratulations from nine presidents and prime ministers Thursday, returning calls from world leaders who reached out after his presidential victory.

The global financial crisis was among the topics Obama discussed with key U.S. allies he’ll deal with during his administration.

Obama spokeswoman Stephanie Cutter said the president-elect spoke to Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, French President Nicolas Sarkozy, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, Japanese Prime Minister Taro Aso, Mexican President Felipe Calderon, South Korean President Lee Myung-bak and British Prime Minister Gordon Brown.

By NEDRA PICKLER, Associated Press Writer

Sarkozy’s office says they spoke for 30 minutes and characterized the discussion as “extremely warm” as the president congratulated Obama on a “brilliant” election victory. The statement said they discussed international issues, particularly the financial crisis, and agreed to meet in the “quite near future.”

U.S. President-elect Senator Barack Obama (D-IL) speaks on the ... 
U.S. President-elect Senator Barack Obama (D-IL) speaks on the phone in a Chicago office November 6, 2008, in this handout image from the Obama campaign. According to the Obama campaign, the Presidenti-elect returned calls to nine world leaders on Thursday. REUTERS/Obama Campaign/Handout

Harper’s office said in a statement that they spoke about an international financial summit in Washington on Nov. 15 and its importance for addressing the global financial crisis. Obama had no plans to attend the meeting.

The prime minister’s office says the two leaders emphasized that there could be no closer friends and allies than the United States and Canada and vowed to maintain and further build upon the relationship. Harper’s office called it a warm exchange and said they agreed to talk again soon.

Calderon’s office said Obama pledged continued U.S. support for Mexico’s fight against organized crime and drug trafficking. A statement from the Mexican president’s office says Obama told Calderon he was “conscious of the difficulty of the battle” and offered “decisive” U.S. support.

Congress approved $400 million in anti-drug aid for Mexico last June, but has yet to release the money.

Olmert’s office said the two “agreed on the need to continue advancing peacemaking, while safeguarding Israel’s security.” Israel and the Palestinians relaunched talks nearly a year ago at a U.S.-sponsored peace conference, and they set a year-end target for a final accord. But no breakthroughs have been reported, and in Israel on Thursday, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice all but conceded that goal was unachievable.

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http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20081107/ap_on_
el_pr/obama_world_leaders;_ylt=AtWbv.rrq
OV2fRewYpMnWbes0NUE

US pushes for tougher sanctions on Iran

November 2, 2007

By DAVID STRINGER, Associated Press Writer

LONDON – A top American diplomat pressed for harsher U.N. sanctions against Iran for its nuclear program on Friday, while Iran’s former president said talks with the U.N. atomic watchdog were progressing and warned against threatening his country.

U.S. Undersecretary of State Nicholas Burns was meeting diplomats from the four other permanent Security Council members and Germany to rally support for a tougher track with Iran, which has a deadline next month to fully disclose details of its nuclear program.

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown and France support new sanctions if Iran continues to refuse to suspend uranium enrichment, though fellow permanent U.N. Security Council members Russia and China remain skeptical.

The U.S. and allies accuse Iran of using a civilian power program as cover to develop ….

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http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20071102/ap_on_re_mi_ea/nuclear_
talks_iran;_ylt=AkudIUkgxcLosBw7O60SBHKs0NUE