G7 looks to win friends – and influence
They came, they saw, they could not get one good picture of UK PM Boris Johnson… But most importantly, they talked – and the focus was about being a better friend to the developing world than China. Sending a billion coronavirus vaccines to poorer countries in a bid to “vaccinate the world” by the end of 2022 is one step. Another is support for projects “from railways in Africa to wind farms in Asia” to fight climate change under a program to rival China’s Belt and Road initiative. The group also called out China’s human rights record for criticism – all of which had China responding that it would “defend our national sovereignty, security, and development interests”. PM Scott Morrison said he received support for our bumpy dealings with China that have required the government to be “very clear about what our values are and what our principles are and how our countries are run, free of interference.” Next up for Morrison: a free trade deal with the UK…
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