Source AP ©

Gordon Brown to take Angela Merkel for Germany-England football match

Prime Minister Gordon Brown will hold talks Wednesday with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and then take her to watch her country's soccer clash with England, British officials said Monday.

The leaders will attend the exhibition game at London's Wembley stadium - likely to be hotly contested between the two soccer rivals - after discussions focussing on development and trade, officials said.

A Downing Street spokeswoman, speaking on customary condition of anonymity, said Merkel and Brown planned to discuss "international development issues, trade and other issues arising out of the G8."

She did not specify if Brown and Merkel planned further talks on climate change, the issue Germany made the centerpiece of its leadership of the Group of Eight industrialized nations, or efforts to meet targets to cut carbon dioxide levels.

The EU bloc has agreed to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 20 percent by 2020, while the G8 leaders agreed in June to call for substantial global emissions reductions, citing a goal of a 50 percent cut by 2050.

Brown made his first foreign visit as Britain's new prime minister to Germany in July.