India, and its governing party, are capitalizing on the moment.Credit…Harish Tyagi/EPA, via Shutterstock
What to watch at the G20 summit in India
The Group of 20 summit kicks off tomorrow in New Delhi, bringing together world leaders to coordinate policy for the global economy. President Biden is expected to attend, but China’s leader, Xi Jinping, and President Vladimir Putin of Russia will skip the event.
For some insight on what to expect, I turned to Katie Rogers, a White House correspondent, who is in New Delhi covering the summit.
What are the biggest issues on the agenda?
Katie: The G20 is an economic-focused summit, and the host country’s efforts to showcase the promise and potential of a juggernaut Indian economy can’t be overlooked. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has all but shut down the city of Delhi for this summit because he wants the focus to be intently on discussing shared economic opportunities and addressing climate issues.
What does the White House want to get out of it?
One initiative to look at is a push from the White House to encourage shoring up lines of credit for smaller countries by bolstering the World Bank’s lending power. The underlying effort here is part of the administration’s broad push to counter China, which has historically been a reliable creditor for poorer nations.
What does the absence of Xi and Putin mean for the gathering?
In short, it means that there will be little on the agenda that focuses, at least directly, on the war in Ukraine or providing economic aid. There are no hopes for any sort of binding joint statement, called a communiqué, among the leaders. Putin and Xi would need to sign on to such a document and they did not do so last year. Xi attended last year, of course, but analysts say domestic economic pressure and tensions with India have contributed to his absence this time around.
What will come out of the summit?
One thing I will be looking at is President Biden’s efforts to strengthen his relationship with Modi, a leader he sees as politically stable and one he believes is interested in deepening strategic and economic ties. With Modi straddling the line between East and West, it remains to be seen how much of a partner he could be in forcefully countering China’s rise. But I am interested to see what the two leaders identify as their biggest challenge or shared opportunity going forward.
China’s exports fall for a fourth month
China’s exports to the world dropped 8.8 percent in August from a year earlier, the government said yesterday, marking the fourth month in a row of sliding overseas sales. Imports fell 7.3 percent in August from a year earlier.
Economists had expected the August trade numbers to be slightly worse. Since the spring, China’s growth has sagged and home prices have suffered, shaking consumer and investor confidence. The new data reflects continued weak demand in China and abroad.
Takeaway: The export data was the latest sign that overall demand for China’s goods may have begun to bottom out. However, its exports are coming down from a very high level, and the country remains an industrial powerhouse.
One bright spot: Even as China’s other exports falter, its carmakers are seeing big increases in overseas sales, mainly for gasoline-powered models.
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Allegations against Kitagawa have circulated for decades, but were largely ignored. However, the release of a BBC documentary in March featuring interviews with three of Kitagawa’s accusers prompted more men to come forward and put pressure on the company to respond.
At a news conference yesterday, Julie Keiko Fujishima, the president of Johnny & Associates and Kitagawa’s niece, acknowledged the results of the investigation, apologized on behalf of herself and the company and said she had resigned as the company’s president.
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That’s it for today’s briefing. Justin Porter will be back Monday. See you next time. — Jonathan
P.S. The Times won three Online Journalism Awards for work including investigative reporting and social media.
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