Saturday, September 26, 2009

G-20 Showcases Priorities of Previously Oppressed Economies [POE]

G-20 Showcases Priorities of Previously Oppressed Economies (POE)

The US and Europe still consider themselves to be the center of the universe.

Sorry the G-20 is not your uncle's G-8!

There is an emerging World Economic Order dynamic that is NOT made up exclusively of the former colonial powers, and neo-imperial states like the US continue to destabilize the emerging world order.

This Times article focuses on what the US and Europe's leaders say. Is that important? Not so much.

It is China, India, Brazil and others who are calling the tune.

Their comments and concerns should have been more comprehensively reported. The Times should not be serving as a mouthpiece for the power who caused the economic downturn in the first place.

Your reporter's job is to provide fair and balanced reporting that presents concerns and priorities of ALL the G-20 members, not just the G-8.

Suck it up, get over it, there is a power shift, the world is multipolar and the G-20 like the G-77 are part of the global shift towards social justice. The G-8 deserves to become obsolete.

Now if we could also do away with the UNSC..... abandon all efforts to expand it, as Brazil and India regrettably want to do.

The UN General Assembly consisting of ALL member states should cast votes on regional and global security issues, not the US-Euro-led UNSC, or any expanded form of the UN IN-SECURITY COUNCIL.

Chithra KarunaKaran

Ethical Democracy As Lived Practice
New York Times copyright
Group of 20 Agrees on Far-Reaching Economic Plan
Published: September 25, 2009
The Hindu copyright
So is G20 the new G8? Not quite
by Siddharth Varadarajan
Pittsburgh: The White House describes it as part of the process of “creating a 21st century international economic architecture” and analysts around the world have already hailed the G20 as the worthy successor to the G8 group of leading industrial economies. But when the hype from Pittsburgh settles, one thing is clear: the absence of political coherence in the larger group of 20 means the group of eight will remain a useful platform for the United States to try and forge a common stand on key strategic issues, even if the G20 assumes the mantle of global economic stewardship that the smaller, more exclusive group can no longer credibly or effectively discharge.

“Dramatic changes in the world economy have not always been reflected in the global architecture for economic cooperation,” a White House statement released shortly after President Barack Obama hosted a banquet for G20 leaders here on Thursday night. “This all started to change today … [as] leaders endorsed the G20 as the premier forum for their international economic cooperation. This decision brings to the table the countries needed to build a stronger, more balanced global economy, reform the financial system and lift the lives of the poorest,” the statement somewhat grandiosely asserted.

At the time of going to press, the G20’s final communiqué had not yet been released, though key elements of the U.S. formulation are believed to have been incorporated. The communiqué is also likely to endorse the continuation of global stimulus measures, the need for rebalancing consumption and savings in major economies, better financial regulation, as well as tying the remuneration of international bankers to the adherence of their banks to prudential norms.

For the U.S., Europe and Japan, the G20 is a better forum to accommodate the rising aspirations of Brazil, Russia, India and China than the G8 because the majority of the larger group still consists of Western, OECD countries. A truly representative G8, on the other hand, would give the BRIC nations a collective voice roughly equal to the four largest Western economies.

The G20 brings for the U.S. an added advantage: the presence of China and India helps blunt the opposition of Europe to certain structural adjustments in the management of the world economy that America, on balance, favours, such as a change in the composition of the IMF board. Since Europe has a disproportionate presence, reducing its representation there in order to make way for the emerging economies is a low-cost way of getting the latter to support wider U.S.-led initiatives. But on political issues like nonproliferation, the G20 would never allow the U.S. the kind of latitude it enjoys at the G8, despite the presence of Russia in the smaller grouping.

How does the size of the high table matter? A senior Indian official involved in the climate change issue told The Hindu that the presence of a large Western group which already has many of its positions worked out means a country like India is always forced to go in batting on the back foot.

Traditionally, India has tended to serve as the bellwether for developing country positions on a wide range of issues. India works well with G77-plus-China and is able to leverage this wider alliance during multilateral negotiations. But in forums like the G20, the West fights back with formulations that seek to chip away at the developing country consensus. This might be harder to do in a smaller setting like a truly representative G8 or even the G8 plus Outreach-5, where India and China do not have to raise their voice in order to be heard.

A case in point is climate change, where the U.S., and to a lesser extent Europe and Japan, have simply refused to implement the prescribed norms of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change for binding emission cuts. Yet, in the run-up to the Pittsburgh summit, India and China, which have taken on voluntary mitigation targets, found themselves under pressure in the G20 to “do more.”

Times of India copyright
UNITED NATIONS: India today welcomed the renewed global push for achieving a world free of atomic weapons but underlined that the international
nuclear order cannot be "discriminatory".

"India attaches the highest priority to the goal of nuclear disarmament and has an impeccable non-proliferation record. We welcome the renewed global debate on achieving a world free of nuclear weapons," External Affairs Minister S M Krishna said while addressing the 64th session of the United Nations here.

"The international nuclear order cannot be discriminatory. Further, States must fulfil the obligations they have undertaken," he said in the backdrop of pressures on non-NPT signatories to join the pact. India is not a signatory to the NPT yet.

The United Nations Security Council resolution piloted by US President Barack Obama this week asked all non-NPT signatories to join the treaty as non-nuclear weapon states but India, which views the treaty as flawed and discriminatory, has refused to accept it.

However, Krishna said India was committed to a voluntary and unilateral moratorium on nuclear testing.

"We remained committed to a voluntary, unilateral moratorium on nuclear testing," he said, adding that India will continue to engage with key countries to garner greater international understanding to achieve nuclear disarmament.