The promotion of digital innovation and inclusive growth in an increasingly digitized global economy have become mainstream concerns within the G20 agenda. In this blog, Marina Larionova traces the evolution of the G20’s involvement in bridging digital and economic growth policies, and proposes a set of priorities for the G20 digital ministers to consider at their upcoming meeting over April 6-7.
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.
The German presidency of the Group of Twenty (G20) begins on December 1, 2016, in an even more difficult political context than the previous Chinese presidency. Due to the German federal elections scheduled for the second half of 2017, Chancellor Angela Merkel’s government moved forward the Hamburg G20 Summit to July 2017, intensifying the time-constraints on negotiators. Despite the circumstances, the forum should act with more urgency to achieve sustainable and inclusive global economic growth. In what could be a decisive year for the international economy, contributions from other members will be crucial.