Merkel 'opposes' Chinese G8 membership

18th October 2006, Comments 0 comments

18 October 2006, Berlin (dpa) - German Chancellor Angela Merkel opposes Chinese membership in the G8 club of industrial nations and does not plan any initiative aimed at Beijing's accession when she holds the group's presidency next year, a senior official said Wednesday. The official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said there were two reasons for Berlin's position against taking in China or any other new Group of Eight (G8) member countries at present, namely because the G8 is a "community of val

18 October 2006

Berlin (dpa) - German Chancellor Angela Merkel opposes Chinese membership in the G8 club of industrial nations and does not plan any initiative aimed at Beijing's accession when she holds the group's presidency next year, a senior official said Wednesday.

The official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said there were two reasons for Berlin's position against taking in China or any other new Group of Eight (G8) member countries at present, namely because the G8 is a "community of values", and in order to keep the G8 from becoming too large and unwieldy.

The official admitted that China's economy had a great deal of more weight than several countries which belong to the G8. Members of the club are Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia and the United States.

"It could be that the time for (China) to join could come some day but at the moment the Chancellor does not yet think it has arrived," said the official.

The official admitted that questions could be raised about whether Russia fitted in with the "community of values" shared by other G8 members.

Russia, which became a G8 member in 1997, was admitted to the club in a bid to help push forward development of the country's political culture, said the official.

Germany hosts next year's G8 summit at the Baltic Sea resort of Heiligendamm from June 6 to 8.

DPA

Subject: German news

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