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Language from last year's statement vowing to "resist all forms of protectionism" was dropped and showed a clear acknowledgement of Mr Trump's "America first" agenda. "We reiterate our determination to use all policy tools - monetary, fiscal and structural - individually and collectively to achieve our goal of strong, sustainable, balanced and inclusive growth, while enhancing economic and financial resilience".

"We believe in free trade: We are one of the largest markets in the world, we are one of the largest trading partners in the world", Mnuchin said.

There is still hope among advocates of free-trade that moderate voices in the Trump administration will gain influence.

The meeting will pave the way for a summit of national leaders in Hamburg, Germany, on July 7-8.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, taking part in his first global meeting since being sworn in, expressed optimism despite the disagreement over wording.

"This is my first G20, so what was in the past communique is not necessarily relevant from my standpoint", Mnuchin said. "Their lens is: How can trade benefit the U.S.?"

African Ministers from Côte d'Ivoire, Morocco, Rwanda, Senegal and Tunisia were invited to the G20, where they each delivered presentations on their country's macroeconomic environment, reform initiatives and investment projects, the National Treasury said in a statement on Monday.

The G-20, an worldwide forum created in 1999 for the governments from 20 major economies, met in Baden-Baden, Germany, over the weekend, Mnuchin's first official trip as America's top finance man.

G20 finance ministers will probably remove any mention of trade in the final communique as Trump's team pushes for language on fair trade and others stick to the open trade mantra. Its decisions don't have the same force as an worldwide treaty but depend on individual countries' promises to follow through.

Chinese Finance Minister Xiao Jie on Saturday met with US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.

The US is nudging the G-20 to change course.

While delegates greeted Mnuchin and said that he had been engaged in the process, they said he didn't elaborate on how the US considers itself to be treated unfairly. "He is very constructive and talking about good relationships with all of his worldwide counterparts".