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David H. McCormick
David H. McCormick
Deputy National Security Advisor for International Economic Affairs

June 1, 2007

David H. McCormick
Good afternoon everyone. It is a pleasure to be with you on “Ask the White House.” I am David McCormick, Deputy National Security Advisor for International Economic Affairs, and I am here to answer a few of your questions about President Bush’s upcoming trip to the G-8 Summit next week. Every year , the eight leading industrial nations—Germany, France, the United Kingdom, Italy, Japan, the United States, Canada, and Russia—come together to discuss the most important issues facing the world. This year’s meeting is taking place in Germany, where leaders will discuss topics on poverty and Africa, health, peace and security and climate change.

Dee, from Oregon writes:
David, What exactly is the G8 summit trip, and how will it help us?

David H. McCormick
G-8 member states meet each year to discuss continued cooperation on a broad range of international economic, security, and political issues. The G-8 presidency rotates among the members each year—Germany occupies the presidency this year—with the host nation selecting the topics for discussion. The G-8 Summit provides the United States the opportunity to gain cooperation from other important countries on host of important issues, including development, counterterrorism, trade, energy security, and climate change.

Adian, from Cape town, South Africa writes:
Good day With the G8 summit taking place soon. The question everybody asking whats the developed nations doing to ensure that the poorer nations are being looked after through international aidfunding and keeping these nations accountable in receivingadministring the aidfunding.

Whats different this time around?


David H. McCormick
The G-8 Summit is an important forum for development cooperation. The U.S. has a strong record of assisting many of the world’s poorest nations, with an emphasis on supporting projects in nations that govern justly, invest in their people and encourage economic freedom. This idea lies at the heart of the Millennium Challenge Account, created at the President’s initiative in 2002, which has since signed compacts and threshold programs worth over $3 billion. Just yesterday, President Bush reaffirmed his commitment to international development, announcing expanded basic education program for the world’s poorest children; and the Africa Financial Sector Initiative, an effort to strengthen financial markets and mobilize $1 billion in new investment, and help spur job creation and economic growth.

As part of its ongoing dialogue on Africa, the G-8 is focusing this year on health systems and HIV/AIDS. As the world leader in the fight against HIV/AIDS through the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, the United States is pushing other G-8 members to build upon and follow-through on their existing commitments to fight this terrible disease. In addition, we need strong G-8 leadership to help combat other infectious diseases that hamper development and stability, including avian and pandemic influenza, malaria, tuberculosis and polio.

Harry, from Dalian,China writes:
Will President Bush meet China's President Hu on G8, and what will they talk about?

David H. McCormick
The President will spend most of his time at the Summit in group discussions, some of which will include China. He also hopes that the schedule will permit a chance to speak with President Hu one-on-one. President Bush and President Hu last met at APEC in November 2006, but they have spoken on the phone since that time as well. They would talk about a wide range of global, regional and bilateral issues of concern to the United States and China.

David, from Rockville, MD writes:
Why is the Bush Administration so opposed to the G-8 German climate proposals? Limiting the worldwide temperature rise this century to 3.6 degrees seems more than reasonable, as does a commitment to cut greenhouse gases by 50 by 2050. There can be no argument that a 43-year implementation schedule would be "bad for US economic interests" -- it is plainly a lengthy timeline that businesses can plan well in advance. Innovation has always been an American hallmark. US businesses are up to the challenge. We just need the Bush Administration to agree to the German climate proposals. Thank you.

David H. McCormick
The President stated yesterday that the United States is committed to developing a global goal for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. But this goal must be developed with the world's major emitters, including China and India. Rather than dictating caps to these countries, we think the better approach is to develop a goal we can commit to together.

On a specific temperature cap, we don't think that is a practical measure to implement. We can better manage and measure emissions.

Many countries are exploring national emissions strategies--with two recent examples from Japan and Canada. We are looking forward to discussing their proposals, as well as others.

Kim, from Kentucky writes:
Hi Mr. McCormick, What does President Bush hope to accomplish at this year's summit and how will this affect his policies at home--such as in the areas of energy and trade, for instance? Thank You

David H. McCormick
Thanks for your question, Kim. In general, the Summit should highlight our shared commitment to strengthening the global economy and promoting development by reaching out to emerging nations in several areas. While sustaining the current rate of economic growth, the United States will stress the need to develop strategies for maintaining sufficient, affordable and reliable supplies of energy, which includes expanding access to energy in the developing world.

Mark, from Mooresville writes:
Do you believe that the global deficit will be addressed at this year's G8? Will debt relief play a new role in the talks? Do you think that the issue of China's membership will be addressed along with there part in alievating the global deficit? Thank you very much and have a nice day

David H. McCormick
G-8 leaders will discuss continued cooperation on a broad on a broad range of international economic issues including global imbalances. The G-8 members recognize that they have a shared responsibility to reduce global imbalances while maintaining strong economic growth globally. A robust U.S. economy is the best contribution the United States can make to the global economy. The United States is doing its part to correct global imbalances by taking steps to decrease the fiscal deficit and pursuing pro-growth economic policies.

Cliff, from Brimfield, Ohio writes:
Deputy McCormick: I'm sure there are several items on the President's agenda for the up coming G8 summit. But what is at the top of the President's list? and what does he hope to get out of the summit? Thank You

David H. McCormick
In addition to what I’ve already mentioned on the importance of development, energy security, climate change and economic growth, one of the President’s highest priorities for the Summit is enlisting partners in the War on Terror. Enhanced cooperation and coordination among G-8 members to counter evolving terrorist threats is always to our advantage.

David H. McCormick
Thanks to everyone for your great questions. The President is looking forward to a very productive visit to Germany next week!