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Scott Morrison has joined Prime Minister Boris Johnson, US President Joe Biden and other world leaders at an extravagant gala dinner to mark the end of Saturday’s G20 summit in Rome.

Sergio Mattarella – the Italian President – hosted the leaders at the 16th century Quirinale Palace in Rome on Sunday night where they feasted on salmon and sea bass – ahead of the Cop26 climate summit in Glasgow that kicks off on Monday.

Photos from the dinner showed the seating plan, with the Prime Minister seen sitting on the bank of chairs to the left of the head of the table.

Mr Biden was seated next to the Italian President and President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen – all at the head of the table with Mr Mattarella. 

French President Emmanuel Macron meanwhile was seated next to Biden’s wife Jill on one side, while Mr Johnson was in one of the far corners from where the Italian President was seated. Mr Johnson’s wife – Carrie – was also in attendance.

Scott Morrison has joined world leaders including US President Joe Biden, and Prime Minister Boris Johnson at an extravagant dinner in a 16th century palace in Rome (pictured)

Scott Morrison has joined world leaders including US President Joe Biden, and Prime Minister Boris Johnson at an extravagant dinner in a 16th century palace in Rome (pictured)

Scott Morrison has joined world leaders including US President Joe Biden, and Prime Minister Boris Johnson at an extravagant dinner in a 16th century palace in Rome (pictured)

Their dinner menu included marinated salmon, risotto with pumpkin and white truffle, and sea bass, with a tangerine cream dessert.

G20 nations gathered on Saturday to discuss health and economic security across the globe. 

The reception comes amid high tensions between Mr Macron and Mr Morrison after Australia tore up a $90 billion submarine deal with the French to instead form an alliance with Britain and the US to make nuclear-powered subs. 

Before flying out of Australia on Thursday night, Mr Morrison spoke to his French counterpart from his Canberra office for the first time since Australia scrapped the agreement in September. 

Mr Macron said Australia ‘broke the relationship of trust’ between the two countries and it was up to Mr Morrison to repair the relationship.  

Scott Morrison is pictured arriving for the welcome ceremony on the first day of the Rome G20 summit, on October 30

Scott Morrison is pictured arriving for the welcome ceremony on the first day of the Rome G20 summit, on October 30

Scott Morrison is pictured arriving for the welcome ceremony on the first day of the Rome G20 summit, on October 30

Mr Morrison and Mr Johnson wave to cameras as they meet prior to a bilateral meeting during the G20 summit in Rome

Mr Morrison and Mr Johnson wave to cameras as they meet prior to a bilateral meeting during the G20 summit in Rome

Mr Morrison and Mr Johnson wave to cameras as they meet prior to a bilateral meeting during the G20 summit in Rome 

Scott Morrison and French President Emmanuel Macron at the Elysee Palace in Paris in June. The two have seen each other for the first time since Australia controversially scrapped a $90billion submarine supply deal with its European ally

Scott Morrison and French President Emmanuel Macron at the Elysee Palace in Paris in June. The two have seen each other for the first time since Australia controversially scrapped a $90billion submarine supply deal with its European ally

Scott Morrison and French President Emmanuel Macron at the Elysee Palace in Paris in June. The two have seen each other for the first time since Australia controversially scrapped a $90billion submarine supply deal with its European ally

The call between the two leaders delayed Mr Morrison’s departure from Canberra, with his wife Jenny and their two daughters Lilly and Abbey sitting out the Rome trip to stay at home. 

Arriving in Italy on Friday night for the G20 meeting, Mr Morrison told reporters he very much appreciated that Mr Macron had reached out to make a personal call to him, and Australia respected and understood the obvious disappointment of France.

‘So we’ve started the way back, I think that’s a positive thing. Of course there will be candid conversations at the start as we deal with the issues as they’ve presented,’ he said.

‘The way you build back those relationships is you work together on the things that matter to us both,’ Mr Morrison said, referencing shared interests in the Indo-Pacific and policies on oceans and technology.

World leaders gathered for a phot after meeting in Rome for Saturday's G20 summit, which focused on health and economic security

World leaders gathered for a phot after meeting in Rome for Saturday's G20 summit, which focused on health and economic security

World leaders gathered for a phot after meeting in Rome for Saturday’s G20 summit, which focused on health and economic security

Italy's Prime Minister, Mario Draghi greets Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Saturday ahead of the summit

Italy's Prime Minister, Mario Draghi greets Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Saturday ahead of the summit

Italy’s Prime Minister, Mario Draghi greets Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Saturday ahead of the summit

‘Antarctica is another key area and Australia is a highly reputable operator there. I know France equally has their interests there.’

The federal government said the phone call came after Mr Morrison wrote a letter to Mr Macron in October to try and patch up relations. 

While the prime minister has not secured talks with Mr Macron on the sidelines of the G20 meeting, he was able to grab a few words with him.

‘I went up and just put my arm on his shoulder, I said g’day Emmanuel and look forward to catching up over the next couple of days, which I assure you, that’s the way these things work,’ Mr Morrison told reporters.

‘He was happy to exchange those greetings, and we’ve known each other for a while. But you know, it’s just the process of being on the road back.’

Prince Charles, Prince of Wales is greeted by Italian President Sergio Mattarella as he arrives to attend a reception and dinner

Prince Charles, Prince of Wales is greeted by Italian President Sergio Mattarella as he arrives to attend a reception and dinner

Prince Charles, Prince of Wales is greeted by Italian President Sergio Mattarella as he arrives to attend a reception and dinner

Prince Charles, Prince of Wales (centre) is greeted by Italian President Sergio Mattarella (right) and Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi (left) as he arrives to attend a reception and dinner at The Quirinale Palace on October 30, 2021 in Rome

Prince Charles, Prince of Wales (centre) is greeted by Italian President Sergio Mattarella (right) and Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi (left) as he arrives to attend a reception and dinner at The Quirinale Palace on October 30, 2021 in Rome

Prince Charles, Prince of Wales (centre) is greeted by Italian President Sergio Mattarella (right) and Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi (left) as he arrives to attend a reception and dinner at The Quirinale Palace on October 30, 2021 in Rome

Mr Morrison isn’t the only leader who has landed themselves in Mr Macron’s bad books, with the French President also outraged with the leaders of the US and UK over the axing of the multi-billion agreement as Britain and France also continue to clash over post-Brexit fishing licences. 

Macron and Jill Biden’s seating arrangement at the gala dinner, however, suggests that the US and France have repaired the relationship damage done over the nuclear submarine deal. 

Mr Biden told reporters after meeting Mr Macron on Friday night that the US had been ‘clumsy’ in its orchestration of the AUKUS agreement. 

‘I think, what happened was to use an English phrase, what we did was clumsy,’ he said.

Mr Biden added the submarine deal ‘was not done with a lot of grace’.

‘I was under the impression that France had been informed long before,’ he said.

Pictured: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is greeted by Mattarella and Draghi

Pictured: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is greeted by Mattarella and Draghi

Pictured: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is greeted by Mattarella and Draghi

Earlier on Saturday, Johnson complained to Ms von der Leyen that French threats over fishing were ‘completely unjustified’ as a British minister said London was ‘actively considering’ invoking a Brexit dispute tool for the first time.

For her part, Von Der Leyen tweeted that the European Commission was ‘intensively engaging for finding solutions’ on both the fishing spat and another linked row with Brussels over their divorce pact’s implementation in Northern Ireland.

The simmering feud over fish has already seen a British trawler detained in a French port and Paris’ ambassador in London summoned to the Foreign Office for the type of dressing down usually reserved for hostile states not allies.

France is incensed that Britain and the Channel Islands of Jersey and Guernsey have not issued some French boats licences to fish in their waters post-Brexit.

Paris has vowed that unless licences are approved, it will ban UK boats from unloading their catches at French ports from next Tuesday and impose checks on all products brought to France from Britain.     

The dinner came after world’s G20 world’s major economies approved a global minimum tax on the largest companies, but were still haggling over the pressing issue of climate change.

A handout photo made available by the Quirinal Press Office shows Italian President Sergio Mattarella (C) as he delivers a speech next to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (L), Dutch Queen Maxima (2L), US President Joe Biden (2R) and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen (R) during an official dinner on the occasion of the G20, Rome, Italy, 30 October 2021

A handout photo made available by the Quirinal Press Office shows Italian President Sergio Mattarella (C) as he delivers a speech next to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (L), Dutch Queen Maxima (2L), US President Joe Biden (2R) and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen (R) during an official dinner on the occasion of the G20, Rome, Italy, 30 October 2021

A handout photo made available by the Quirinal Press Office shows Italian President Sergio Mattarella (C) as he delivers a speech next to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (L), Dutch Queen Maxima (2L), US President Joe Biden (2R) and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen (R) during an official dinner on the occasion of the G20, Rome, Italy, 30 October 2021

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (3rd R) and his wife Emine Erdogan (3rd L), Italian President Sergio Mattarella (2nd R) and his daughter Laura Mattarella (R), Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi (2nd L) and his wife Maria Serenella Cappello (L) pose for a photo

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (3rd R) and his wife Emine Erdogan (3rd L), Italian President Sergio Mattarella (2nd R) and his daughter Laura Mattarella (R), Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi (2nd L) and his wife Maria Serenella Cappello (L) pose for a photo

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (3rd R) and his wife Emine Erdogan (3rd L), Italian President Sergio Mattarella (2nd R) and his daughter Laura Mattarella (R), Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi (2nd L) and his wife Maria Serenella Cappello (L) pose for a photo

In the first major announcement of the two-day G20 summit in Rome, the bloc endorsed a ‘historic’ agreement that would see multinationals subject to a minimum 15 percent tax, said US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, who attended the talks.

The deal would ‘end the damaging race to the bottom on corporate taxation’, she said in a statement.

The reform plan, already backed by almost 140 countries, seeks to end the practice of big corporates such as Apple and Google parent Alphabet of sheltering profits in low-tax countries.

But no consensus had yet emerged on a collective commitment on climate change, on the eve of the crucial Cop26 conference starting in Glasgow on Sunday.

A senior US official said elements of the final G20 statement ‘are still being negotiated’, adding that the Rome summit was about ‘helping build momentum’ before the UN climate talks.

At a gala dinner at his lavish Qurinale palace on Saturday evening, Italian President Sergio Mattarella urged leaders to act for the sake of ‘future generations’.

‘The climate change emergency looms over everything else,’ the 80-year-old said, adding: ‘The eyes of billions of people, of entire peoples, are upon us and the results we will be able to achieve.’

Stop playing games

Earlier in the day, thousands of climate protesters, many of them young, gathered in the city centre to demand tougher action.

‘We’re asking G20 leaders to stop playing games among themselves and finally listen to the people and act for the climate, as science has been asking for years,’ Fridays for Future activist Simone Ficicchia told AFP.

Hosts Italy are pushing the G20 to collectively endorse the UN goal of limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels, one of the aspirations of the landmark 2015 Paris climate accords.

A demonstrator wears a death mask during environmental protests at G20

A demonstrator wears a death mask during environmental protests at G20

A demonstrator wears a death mask during environmental protests at G20

Police in riot gear clear the road by moving the Climate Camp activists

Police in riot gear clear the road by moving the Climate Camp activists

Police in riot gear clear the road by moving the Climate Camp activists

‘From the pandemic, to climate change, to fair and equitable taxation, going it alone is simply not an option,’ Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi told leaders ahead of the closed-door talks.

But G20 members, many at different stages of economic development, remain at odds over the other major goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050.

The stakes are high, as the G20 – which includes China, the US, India, the EU and Russia – accounts for 80 percent of global GDP and nearly 80 percent of greenhouse gas emissions. 

Source: Daily Mail

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