G20 summit risks doing ‘too little, too slow’, CIDSE says
(Brussels, 31 October 2011) Leaders of G20 countries meet in Cannes on Thursday and Friday (3-4 November 2011). The international alliance of Catholic development agencies CIDSE warns that the anti-crisis measures G20 countries discussed so far will be too light to change business as usual and make a positive impact on the world’s poorest.
In its recommendations for the G20 summit, CIDSE calls on G20 leaders to reform the global financial system and move economies out of the crisis through just and development-friendly solutions, like the Financial Transaction Tax.
CIDSE President Chris Bain said: “A global tax on financial transactions could go a long way in stabilising the financial system and financing the fight against poverty and climate change. The European leaders should continue to promote the tax in the G20 and we hope those G20 leaders who have so far refused to appreciate its potential and urgency will support the tax too.”
The nine middle-income developing countries that are members of the G20 account for 58 percent of the world’s poor. Vast numbers of people are becoming poorer even in the advanced industrialised G20 countries due to the global financial crisis.
“Yet, the G20 continues to focus on an outdated growth model that leaves the poorest out in the cold – unable to benefit from or contribute to the economy. Joint action by the world’s most advanced economies could mean a lot to the poorest at home and abroad, but with the wrong agenda it will only lead to further impoverishment and inequality.
“Few doubts exist about President Sarkozy’s ambitions for the 2011 G20 summit. The question, however, is whether words will translate into action. The G20 should take urgently needed measures to regulate global finance and discourage speculation, tackle sovereign debt issues, and reform the international monetary system. Slight course adjustments only will not do.”
Unpredictable food prices and tax evasion are two issues the G20 should urgently deal with.
Bernard Pinaud, Director of French CIDSE member CCFD-Terre Solidaire, said: “The G20’s track-record on ending tax havens is an example of the G20’s ‘too little, too slow’ approach. Southern countries have not benefited from the small progress in tax cooperation, while recent agreements signed by Switzerland with Germany and the UK jeopardise all international efforts towards transparency.
“Food price volatility is another crucial example. While millions of people go hungry because of unpredictable food prices, the G20 focuses on improved market information. Instead, it should address the unfair trade rules, market deregulation and speculation which cause the problem.”
Contact in Cannes:
• Pascale Palmer, CAFOD Senior Media Officer, ppalmer(at)cafod.org.uk, +44 7785950585 (English)
• Nathalie Perramon CCFD-Terre Solidaire Press Officer, n.perramon(at)ccfd.asso.fr +33 6 82 85 28 82 (French)