G20 outcome 'a bitter pill for the world’s poor' says banned World Development Movement
The G20 outcome is ‘a bitter pill to swallow’ for the world’s poorest people says the World Development Movement, the anti-poverty group that was banned at last minute from attending the G20 summit. The campaigners are dismayed that the G20 leaders have missed an historic opportunity to launch a global recovery plan that will benefit poor people and tackle the climate crisis.
Julian Oram, head of policy at the World Development Movement said:
“For the world’s poorest people the outcome of the summit is a bitter pill to swallow, as they are being hit hardest by the economic and climate crises. What is needed from the G20 is a radical shake up of the global economy, what we got was world leaders desperately rearranging the deck chairs on a sinking Titanic. The commitments to stay on course to meet the Millennium Development Goals and to provide emergency funding for poor countries are welcome. But what was missing was a global green new deal that puts the interests of poor people and the environment at the heart of international trade and finance."
On the issue of free trade and a push for a deal at the WTO, Julian Oram, remarked:
"The G20 are absolutely right that trade is important to developing countries, but they seem hell-bent on maintaining the rigged rules that favour multi-national companies and not people in developing countries. Of course we do not want rich countries closing their markets to developing country exports in a rush to protectionism; but developing countries must not be locked into unfair free trade deals that bring little advantage to people and reduces governments' ability to choose their own economic policies. In particular, developing countries must not be pressured into signing up to a deal at the World Trade Organisation that will not work for them.
"Gordon Brown's dogmatic pursuit of free trade deals contradicts his mantra on re-regulating the banking system. The EU is pushing free trade deals that will make it easier for European banks to carry on their casino-style investment practices in other parts of the world – an inconsistency that has not been dealt with in any way by the G20."
On the trebling of the IMF's budget, Julian Oram said:
"The IMF has a history of lending money to developing countries with strict conditions attached – such as cuts in public service expenditure, privatisation, and liberalisation. These policies have exacerbated the current economic crisis and global inequality. The G20 has not done enough to guarantee that IMF ‘bail outs’ for developing countries do not come with more failed economic policies in tow. Talk of reforming the IMF and World Bank is long overdue, but to be truly democratic, we need to see more than a small expansion of the privileged club of countries which have a say in how these institutions are run.”
On the fact that climate change has been largely ignored, Julian Oram said:
"It's absolutely astounding that the G20 communiqué merely paid lip service to climate change and the need for a low carbon economy. The excuse that climate change will be discussed later in the year at Copenhagen doesn't wash. The G20 has missed the opportunity to deliver a green global stimulus package that would create jobs and help to tackle climate change. The economic crisis and the climate crisis are intrinsically interlinked and must be addressed as such through a global green new deal."
On the future work for the G20, Julian Oram commented:
“The G20 has proven itself not be up to the job of taming the beast they helped to create. A much more democratic and participatory international process must now be launched to rewrite the rules of the global economy in favour of ordinary people and the environment, instead of the corporate elite."
For more information, please call:
Press officer, World Development Movement
0207 820 4900/4913, 07711 875 345, Email: email@example.com