Economy

Stocks set for tense session after G7 and ahead Trump-Kim Summit

Stocks set for tense session after G7 and ahead Trump-Kim Summit”

Expectations for the summit were being tempered by South Korean president Moon Jae-in, who said: "The deep-rooted hostile relationship and the North Korean nuclear issue can not be resolved in one single action in a meeting between leaders". He noted the goodwill gesture of Pyongyang recently releasing "three hostages" - Americans who had been imprisoned in the country - and that was enough for him to proceed with the summit.

"I think the minimum would be a relationship".

While en route to Singapore, Trump said he looked forward to meeting Kim on what he anticipated would be an exciting day.

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Sung Kim, the USA ambassador to the Philippines who has taken the lead on policy negotiations with the North, will hold a "working group" with a North Korean delegation to discuss final preparations for the meeting.

That modest vision marks a break with the stratospheric goals he set after he agreed on March 8 to this meeting.

It "would instead lay out practical steps with requisite commitments from North Korea that demonstrate that it understands, accepts and is committed to achieving denuclearisation as the United States defines it", said Enos, who is also in Singapore to watch the proceedings. China has always been the North's most important ally.

North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un shakes hands with Singapore's Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong at the Istana in Singapore on June 10.

Pompeo has disputed the notion that the president is moving the goalposts, telling reporters that Trump "has always understood that this was a process".

Kim Yo Jong also enjoyed a walkabout in Singapore
Image Kim Yo Jong also enjoyed a walkabout in Singapore

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in a statement that the meetings were "substantive and detailed" but there was no immediate word on what the outcome was.

But analysts who closely watch North Korea believe it is unlikely Kim would have come to Singapore without being confident of the arsenal's security - and the ability to order its use. Past nuclear deals have crumbled over North Korea's reluctance to open its doors to outsiders.

While fighting a trade war with allies, Trump now brings his America First negotiating style to the deadly topic of North Korea's nuclear weapons. The secretary of state has traveled to Pyongyang twice to meet with Kim and will participate in the Singapore talks.

Yet Trump and Kim have yet to agree even on how to define denuclearization of the Korean peninsula - the stated goal of the meeting.

Kim may have shipped over the massive bulletproof and fireproof limousine that became a social media sensation when Kim was shown being driven across the border between the Koreas during his first summit with South Korean President Moon Jae-in, in April, with a dozen staunch bodyguards encircling the auto.

As Trump and Lee sat down for a working lunch at the Istana house, Trump sounded optimistic, telling Lee, "We've got a very interesting meeting in particular tomorrow, and I think things can work out very nicely". "We have to get denuclearisation, we have to get something going".

Mr. Trump and Mr. Kim are both looking for political victories that will help them at home. "The haters, they say, 'Oh, you're giving him a meeting, '" Trump said.

For all the sober-minded talk, it's clear the art-of-the-deal president is still hoping for a major diplomatic victory. We will have seen each other. But any request for the United States to withdraw its 28,000 troops from South Korean bases would likely be rejected. It will certainly be an exciting day and I know that Kim Jong-un will work very hard to do something that has rarely been done before ...



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