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Climate Change, World Trade at Forefront of Day Two of G8 Summit


Climate change and trade figure prominently on this second day of the G8 summit in L'Aquila, Italy as leaders of the world's most powerful economies expand talks to take in counterparts and representatives of major emerging economies.

Summit host, Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi welcomed world leaders for a second day of discussions in L'Aquila.

The agenda items are much the same - the global economic crisis, the environment, climate change and trade. But, Thursday's talks were expanded from the G8 group to include the so-called G5 nations of major emerging economies - China, India, Brazil, South Africa and Mexico. But others were invited to the table as well, along with international organizations.

On climate change, G8 leaders agreed Wednesday on new targets to limit greenhouse gas emissions and try to limit global warming to just two degrees centigrade above pre-industrial levels.

In announcing that decision, Prime Minister Berlusconi spoke of the need to bring other countries into the process, especially India, China and Brazil.

It would be counterproductive, Mr. Berlusconi said, if the United States, Europe, Canada and Japan implement strategies to cut emissions if other countries do not.

G8 leaders have said the group wants to be inclusive and bring other nations into discussions on global issues. The move is also widely seen as an increasing understanding that while G8 members may be the world's most powerful nations, they cannot solve issues such as the global economic crisis or climate change without the help of others.

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