World leaders meeting in Hamburg ran into a major rift over global economic policy as President Donald Trump held firm to his America First doctrine at the expense of unity.
The first day of a two-day summit of Group of 20 leaders was marred by disagreement on free trade and on climate change, with Trump’s protectionist stance the chief sticking point. During a working lunch, Trump stressed that he will always defend the American worker, according to a western diplomatic official familiar with the closed-door session.
French President Emmanuel Macron challenged Trump’s view that the U.S. is losing out on trade, the official said. Taking out his mobile phone, Macron said that when he bought it, he created a trade deficit with the U.S., but that when America built it, it created a trade deficit with China. His point was that it doesn’t make sense to talk about bilateral trade deficits in a multilateral