Loory: The leaders of 21 nations of the Asian-Pacific region gathered to meet in Sydney, Australia, this past weekend. The Pacific Rim includes countries stretching from Canada and Chile to China. This summit involved President George Bush from the United States, President Hu Jintao from China, President Vladimir Putin from Russia, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe from Japan, President Roh Moo-hyun from Korea and President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono from Indonesia. The host was Prime Minister John Howard of Australia. President Bush held one-on-one meetings with all of these leaders in appreciation of how important their countries have become to the U.S. He had a long meeting with Howard, who expressed Australia’s support for the Iraq War and pledged to keep Australia’s small contingent in Iraq despite an upcoming election in which the war will be a major issue. Other problems discussed at the summit were free trade and environmental issues. The U.S. refuses to ratify the Kyoto agreement that would regulate the amount of carbon dioxide each industrialized nation can put into the atmosphere. The world trade issue was intended to jump-start the stalled talks of the 151-member World Trade Organization known as the Doha Round, aimed at promoting free trade. What was the most important thing about this meeting for Australians?
Environment, trade focus of APEC
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