Much of the criticism levelled at the Group of 20 (G20), the club of the world’s most economically powerful industrialised and emerging economies, is justified. The Hamburg summit will play host to high-level autocrats and, in many ways, its agenda is far removed from the needs and standards of a just, inclusive and sustainable global economy. Policy advisors still hoping for the gathering to deliver in some way are banking on an initiative supported by the EU countries and their civil societies in cooperation with several partners from the global South, an initiative designed to promote sustainability solidarity and participation.
In the wake of the tense G7 Leaders Summit in Italy, it is clear that advocates for multilateralism, cross-border cooperation, and globalism in general, must redouble their efforts if they are to successfully counter growing populist support for inward-looking nationalism. In a refreshing reminder of the resolve of those committed to global cooperation, the 2017 Think20 Summit has successfully brought together several hundred policy experts, researchers, officials, and stakeholders with an interest in the G20, from across the world, in order to discuss, consolidate, and give one final push to the large body of policy work that the Think20 community has managed to produce over the last six months.
Time to align: The forces of globalisation, technology, and financial growth need to be reset for the future
Next week PwC will be represented at the Think20 (T20), a gathering of global think tanks in the lead-up to this year’s Group of 20 summit in Germany. The T20’s mission is to deliver a series of reports and thought leadership to aid the G20 leadership and inform the thinking of all the member governments at the summit.
Enhancing the role of Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs) in sustainable global economic development has been an important issue for G20 leaders since their first meeting in 2008. For leaders, the primary purpose of revitalizing the MDBs was to counter the cyclical effects of the crisis. As the subprime crisis receded, the focus of leaders and the overall G20 agenda since 2010 has shifted towards growth, for which infrastructure financing has been highlighted as a key driver.
There is much to discuss as leaders gather in Germany for G20 meetings: from the sluggish global recovery, to the potential for protectionism and threats to globalisation, and the economic and social challenges and opportunities of technological disruption. Reinforced by changing political sentiment over the past year, there is a growing consensus that the global economy is not delivering the benefits that it needs to across the developed world.