On June 28th and 29th, Justin Trudeau gained international (or, at least, Twitter’s) attention for his choice of accessory. Notably, the two Canada themed stickers decorating his briefcase. This is not the first time the Canadian Prime Minister has caught the public’s eye with his fashion choices, such as the over-the-top Indian garbs he and his family wore last year or the pastel pink, half unbuttoned top he donned for this year’s Pride parade. However, some are questioning his decision this time considering the gravity of the event he carried said briefcase to the G20 summit.
An annual meeting of international leaders, the G20, serves as a “premier forum for international economic cooperation” as announced after the Pittsburgh Summit of Sept. 2009. The participants include leaders of 19 countries and the European Union (EU), in total, making up more than 80 per cent of the global GDP. These countries include the original G7, from which it emerged, and growing powers such as the Republic of Korea, India, China, and more. Beyond these countries, leaders from guest countries and international organizations were also invited including Nguyen Xuan Phuc, the Prime Minister of Vietnam.
This year, the summit was held in Osaka, Japan but the host country changes every year.
While many topics were discussed at the summit, Trudeau emphasized the need for international cooperation to “defend the rules-based international order, build economies that work for more people, and protect our shared environment for future generations,” according to his website. Furthermore, in light of Canada’s recent announcement to ban all single-use plastic by 2021, he also embraced Japan’s fight to eliminate plastic pollution and counter climate change.
Along with the President of France, Emmanuel Macron, and the Prime Minister of Australia, Scott Morrison, Trudeau called for action against violent extremism, including those found online.
On the Canadian-led side of things, he also attended the launch of Empower, an initiative supporting women in acquiring equal access to economic and financial aid to grow their own businesses.
With the conclusion of the summit, the leaders have released the G20 Declarations with climate change and the US-China trade war garnering the most international attention (even more so than Trudeau’s stickers). Some of the other topics discussed by the declarations were the global business environment, the fostering of global economic growth, gender equality, and working against corruption.
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