Since September 2008, when the financial crisis took on global dimensions, the Group of Twenty has met three times at the level of Heads of State, and with a seeminly impressive array of commitments on tax issues, emergency finance, trade finance, global governance, regulating private capital, and redefining new roles for existing and new global institutions. But what is missing in their response to the global crisis? Who are the real winners and losers? What has really changed, and what hasn't? And are the levels of change commensurate with the tectonic shifts taking place in the global economy and with the degree of impact on the ground? Perhaps more importantly, are these the type of changes to ensure a crisis like this never happens again?
What: What's missing in the response ot the global financial crisis?
Who: Organized by the Halifax Initiative Coalition; co-hosted by The North-South Institute and the University of Ottawa.
When: October 19 - 20, 2009.
Why: The conference will look at current responses to the financial crisis, identify where those responses are falling short, and propose some policy alternatives ahead of Canada hosting the Group of Eight Summit in 2010.
|IN THIS SECTION
G8 down, but not out, as G20 makes pledges on crisis
If the big headline for April’s G20 Summit (See IU April 2009) was the $1.2 trillion pledged to tackle the financial crisis, this month’s showcase was the G20 itself, as the 20 countries crowned themselves the premier fora on global finance. Next year’s G8 in Canada will in fact be preceded by a G20 meeting, which Ottawa will co-host with 2010 G20 chair Seoul. Earlier this month, Liberal opposition leader Michael Ignatieff went one step further, suggesting that the G8 not bother meeting any more, and calling for a permanent G20 secretariat in Canada.
Rich countries block real change at UN meeting on crisis
In June the United Nations was the site of a battle being waged between the G77, a group of over 130 developing countries, and the United States, Canada, Japan and the European Union. The fight was over how to address the financial and economic crisis and efforts to transform and democratize the global financial system and its institutions. The final outcome document of the UN Conference on the World Financial and Economic Crisis and Its Impact on Development is positive in that it represents a truly global response and has opened up space for countries to express their views on crisis. But the document falls short because rich countries blocked it from including more substantive solutions (see JUST THE FACTS). This is particularly distressing given the wealth of ideas generated in the Stiglitz Commission (IU May 2009), one of the key inputs for the meeting.
Europe looking to lead on response to financial crisis
A warning against US (and Canadian?) opposition to a new international architecture of institutions and tighter regulations to manage a more “moral” form of global capitalism, a flexible Economic Council within the United Nations, and an economic sustainability charter that establishes the rules for global financial governance, were three of the key themes raised by German Chancellor Angela Merckel and French President Sarkozy at a high-level symposium hosted by Sarkozy and former British Prime Minister Tony Blair in Paris this month.
August 28, 2008
Mr. Robert B. Zoellick, President
World Bank Headquarters
1818 H Street, NW
Washington, DC 20433
Dear Mr. Zoellick,
Re.: World Bank governance
That the world is at an historical crossroads is evidenced by the rise of powerful new global economies, financial crises in the US and Europe, the high prices for commodities most notably food and fuel, and the overwhelming climate change crisis. This reality has been recognized in numerous fora such as the recent Commonwealth Heads of State conference, which agreed that in the context of these global crises it is more important than ever to have ambitious reform of the international financial institutions.
The Globe and Mail - Report on Business
The Kindness of Corporations
From the World Economic Forum to undergrad business courses, corporate social responsibility is now a priority. There are just two problems. CSR can be disingenuous. And it’s dangerous
June 27, 2008
April 25, 2008
Mr. Eric Siegel
President and Chief Executive Officer
151 O’Connor St.
Dear Mr. Siegel:
On March 20, the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo publicly released the report of the Mining Contract Review Commission. The Commission is an inter-ministerial body mandated to review numerous contracts that were awarded to mining companies between 1996 and 2005 in the DRC. The Commission confirms that many of the contracts are highly irregular and that their terms are extremely unjust. The government body recommends that a significant number of these agreements be annulled and in some cases, renegotiated.
Innovative financing for development gets boost
As the World Bank, IMF and World Trade Organization are set to discuss innovative financing at their bi-annual High-Level meeting at the UN next month, and UN representatives address the issue in their review of Chapter IV of the Monterrey Consensus days later (see IU January 2008), innovative finance has gotten a series of unexpected boosts from various sides.
The changing face of global development finance
In 2007 Brazil’s Development Bank issued loans worth more than double the entire World Bank portfolio. More than half of the increase in aid since 2002 comes from debt relief, rather than new funding commitments. What’s more, from 1995-2005, Africa saw no net increase in its development aid despite a 35% increase in commitments to global aid over that period. In 2007, China financed more infrastructure projects in Africa than all multilateral and bilateral donors combined. The Gates Foundation provides more funding for neglected developing country diseases than all of the Group of Seven. These were some of the facts that emerged at an HI conference on “The Changing Face of Global Development Finance - Impacts and implications for aid, development, the South and the Bretton Woods Institutions.”
Recieved December 21, 2005.