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.
Energy has a big part in at least four of the announced priorities of Germany’s G20 presidency; trade and investment, climate and energy, 2030 Agenda, and the proposed partnership with Africa. This blog post discusses how the summit process can maximise the G20’s effectiveness in the field of energy.
Germany has taken over the G20 presidency at a time of increasing economic and political isolationism. In the face of a growing divide between those who benefit from globalization and those left behind, support for populist parties is on the rise in many industrialized countries, while mainstream parties are losing ground. The British vote to leave the European Union and the election of Donald Trump in the US are two of the most recent examples. The rising level of isolationism at present poses a risk to growth and employment potential. All in all, international integration has had a positive influence on the prosperity of all countries involved if distributed fairly. Germany should make use of its role at the head of the international forum and take a clear stance against the trend towards protectionism.