G7 japan.jpg
Photograph: EPA/KIMIMASA MAYAMA

Leading advanced economies must pursue structural reforms and expansionary budget policies to stimulate global growth, according to Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, whose country will host the next Group of Seven (G7) summit this month.

Abe spoke Monday in Florence following talks with Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, before travelling to Paris to meet with French President Francois Hollande.

"One expects from G7 countries an acceleration of structural reforms matched by flexible fiscal policies, so that the current [economic] juncture can be overcome and we can avoid new crises and stimulate the global economic recovery," Abe said in Italy.

Japan, Italy and France are part of the G7 nations, along with Britain, Canada, Germany and the United States.

Three issues will top the G7 summit agenda, Hollande said: economic growth, climate change and security.

"We need to show our confidence in the global economy and support international investment," he said, noting that structural reforms to improve competitiveness were needed.

In Italy, Renzi said he saw eye to eye with Abe on economic issues and was "counting a lot on Shinzo Abe's leadership for the success of the G7, particularly on issues related to economic growth."

Abe said terrorism and migration would be prominent topics at the May 26-27 summit in Ise-Shima. He said that he hoped leaders at the summit would be able to send a strong message on resolving migration problems and cooperating to confront violent extremism.

In Florence, the Japanese delegation was chaperoned around the 13th century Palazzo Vecchio, the Uffizi Gallery and Palazzo Pitti museums by Renzi, who was the city's mayor before he took up national office in 2014. Abe hailed Florence as "the cradle of Renaissance civilization."

Later, Hollande hosted a working dinner for Abe at the Elysee Palace in central Paris.

The French and Japanese leaders said they had discussed cultural cooperation in addition to the G7 summit agenda, saying their countries were committed to exchanging experiences from upcoming international sporting events.

France is due to host the European football championship this summer, while Japan is scheduled to host the Rugby World Cup in 2019.

Latest news

Mosque attended by Berlin attacker Amri closed, police confirm

The mosque in Berlin attended by Berlin truck attacker Anis Amri has been closed. The mosque is permanently closed, read a note in German and Turkish on the door of the prayer rooms which was seen on Tuesday.

German army to expand to almost 200,000 soldiers

Germany's Bundeswehr, plans to expand its number of professional soldier to 198,000 by 2024 because of increasing duties, the German Defence Ministry announced on Tuesday.

Fired Audi engineer says he was 'sacrificed' for emissions scandal

A fired Audi engineer was "sacrificed" amid the ongoing VW group diesel emissions scandal, his lawyer claimed in court on Tuesday as he contested his client's dismissal.

French police arrest three over suspected terror plans, source says

French authorities have arrested three men in relation to suspected plans to carry out attacks in the country or travel to Syria, a source close to the investigation told dpa on Tuesday.

UN: Trial against Gaddafi regime was unfair, flawed

Former members of the Gaddafi regime did not get a fair trial in Libya because the proceedings were so seriously compromised, the United Nations criticized in a report on Monday.

Croatia remains Bosnia's biggest trade partner in 2016

Croatia is still the most important foreign trade partner to Bosnia and Herzegovina, according to figures released by the BiH Chamber of Foreign Trade which show that in 2016 the two countries' trade had gone up.

Red Cross: Bodies of 74 migrants wash ashore in Libya

The bodies of 74 migrants washed ashore in Libya, in the north-western city of Zawiya, a spokesman of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) said Tuesday.

Ancelotti makes charity donation after middle finger gesture

Bayern Munich coach Carlo Ancelotti has agreed to donate 5,000 euros (5,200 dollars) to a charity run by the German football federation DFB following his middle finger gesture towards Hertha Berlin fans.

Azerbaijan's long-time leader Aliyev appoints wife as vice president

The long-time president of the oil-rich, Caspian Sea nation of Azerbaijan, Ilham Aliyev, appointed his wife, Mehriban Aliyeva, as vice president on Tuesday.

HSBC reports 62-per-cent fall in annual profit, blames one-off costs

Banking giant HSBC on Tuesday reported a 62-per-cent fall in its annual profit last year, blaming losses incurred from the sale of HSBC Bank Brazil and other one-off costs.

Le Pen quits meeting with Lebanon's Sunni cleric over headscarf row

France's far-right presidential candidate Marine Le Pen walked away from a meeting on Tuesday with Lebanon's senior Muslim Sunni cleric after she refused to wear a headscarf.

Podravka revenues up 15 pct, profit up 54 pct

The Podravka Group that operates in two main business segments: food and pharmaceuticals, generated a net profit in 2016 of HRK 182.4 million, which is 54.7% more than in 2015 without taking into account the one-off effect of consolidating the Zito company or deferred tax returns of Belupo in 2015, according to the company'y unaudited financial statements released on Tuesday.

Chinese prefecture requires all cars to install tracking devices

A prefecture in China’s troubled north-western province of Xinjiang is requiring all vehicles to install satellite tracking devices, a move that comes just weeks after authorities warned against cars being used for terrorist attacks.

Rohingya activist urges companies to stop investing in Myanmar

Foreign companies need to stop investing in Myanmar in order to stop the country's discrimination against its Muslim minority Rohingya, a prominent Myanmar activist said Tuesday.

ASEAN concerned about militarization in disputed South China Sea

South-East Asian countries are concerned about growing militarization in the disputed South China Sea and stressed the need for dialogue to ease tensions, the Philippines’ foreign minister said Tuesday.