The T20 blog is an initiative of the German Development Institute / Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik (DIE) and the Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW). Both institutes have been encouraged by the German government to organise the T20 process during Germany’s G20 Presidency in 2016 and 2017. The T20 organises the collaboration of global think tanks and high-level experts in order to provide analytical depth to ongoing G20 discussions and produce ideas to help the G20 on delivering concrete and sustainable policy measures. The blog intends to bring an additional dimension to the way the T20 engages with members of our own research network, the broader public, and the German G20 presidency in advance of the 2017 G20 Summit in Hamburg.
Ninety-two years ago, John Maynard Keynes wrote his famous essay The Economic Consequences of Mr Churchill. Economists today are going through a similar process for Mr Trump. Indeed the critical questions for the G20 this year are what the consequences will be of Mr Trump’s policies for the G20’s macroeconomic agenda, and what can the G20 do to address them.
The new U.S. President Donald Trump has vowed to depart from the climate agenda of his predecessor Barack Obama and introduce a new energy policy. This expected policy shift, if realized, will deal a blow to the G20’s commitments on energy and climate. As a forum of 19 emerging and industrialized markets, plus the European Union, the G20 is responsible for 82% of global emissions related to the energy sector. The G20 countries thus have a key role to play in curtailing global emissions and implementing the Paris Agreement on climate change.
Just in time for the meeting of the G20 Agricultural Ministers on 22 January 2017 in Berlin the T20 Task Force “Towards Ending Hunger and Sustainable Agriculture” published its Policy Brief on Key Policy Actions for Sustainable Land and Water Use to Serve People.
The 2017 G20 summit takes place in the country that has won international recognition for its “Energiewende” – a fundamental transformation of its energy system. This provides an important window of opportunity for strengthening the G20 agenda on sustainable energy. The world’s overall energy supply is still heavily dependent on fossil fuels, which undermines climate protection objectives, and the resilience of financial markets. With falling costs of renewable energies and global efforts to combat climate change, investments in fossil fuels and nuclear energy bear significant risks for stranded assets and thus the long-term stability of financial markets.
There are seven months left until the 2017 G20 Summit takes place in Hamburg. With the German Government having released its priorities as the incoming G20 president in December 2016, what can we realistically now hope for in Hamburg? One way to think about this question is to cast our minds forward to July 9, the day after the Hamburg Summit, and consider whether the announced priorities are liable to have helped or hindered G20 negotiations in 2017. However, this raises a further question – what sort of achievements or progress should we be looking for to determine if the Hamburg Summit is a success?