Steven Mnuchin Brings Trump’s Economic Message to Italy at G7 Finance Minister Meetings

By Politics FOXBusiness

Courtesy:Dan Hillsdon, FOX Business

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin's first meeting with Italian Finance Minister Pier Carlo Padoan is the start of what will become a  good relationship between Italy and the Trump administration, according to a spokesperson for the Italian minister.

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Meetings so far produced results on cyber security and countering terrorism, key issues for the U.S.  An Italian spokesperson also said – without providing details – the two ministers shared ideas and information on the soundness of the Italian banking system, which is ladened with troubled loans. Italy’s economy is also dealing with rising unemployment.

A Treasury official tells FOX Business one of Mnuchin's top priorities is creating jobs. The secretary is forging and enforcing agreements that the administration hopes will translate into jobs for American workers. That's one reason the Trump administration's “America First” policy is front and center at the summit, even though trade is not a formal topic of discussion. 

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Bari, Italy, a sunny port city on the Adriatic Coast, is the site for the G7 Meeting of Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors, and the first bilateral meeting for Secretary Mnuchin. G7 ministers from Japan, France, Canada, Germany, Italy and the United Kingdom are expected to ask him about the status of tax reform in the United States and if it will include a border adjustment tax.  A Treasury official says the Trump administration does not believe a border adjustment tax will work, but is open to discussing it with Congressional leaders who are writing tax reform legislation.  

Mnuchin will begin one-on-one meetings Friday with ministers from Japan, Germany and Canada, which will continue through Saturday. They are expected to hold discussions on topics including tax reform and regulatory reform in the United States, as well as cyber security and sustaining global economic growth.  

Mnuchin will lead a discussion Friday on cyber security and measures the G7 nations can take to protect the global financial system. A Treasury Department spokesman says it is important to forge consensus among the finance ministers before the G7 summit of world leaders later this month in Sicily, which will be attended by President Trump.