Parliamentary Roundtables on the G8/G20 Agendas
2010 is an important and unique moment for Parliamentarians to engage with Canadians on some of the most important global issues facing our planet and our future. On June 25th, 2010,
To date, there has been little discussion among parliamentarians about the themes leading up to the 2010 summits, and Canadian civil society is looking to engage members from all parties in a discussion around some of the issues highlighted in our civil society platform, An Agenda for Global Development: G8/G20 Civil Society Coalition Platform, endorsed by over 60 organizations across the country. The platform discusses specific, measurable, realistic recommendations to put poverty eradication, economic recovery for all and environmental justice at the centre of the international agenda.
To facilitate the conversation, Canadian civil society is organizing three parliamentary roundtables to discuss party perspectives on climate change, the financial crisis and the millennium development goals (MDGs). The Roundtables will occur as the G20 Finance Ministers meet in Washington, as G8 Development Ministers meet in Halifax and as Canada hosts the Africa Partnership Forum in Toronto.
Roundtable 1: Climate change
Roundtable 2: Global financial crisis
Roundtable 3: Millennium Development Goals
Moderator, MP and Expert Bios
International Monetary Fund
Government accountability bill returns to the House
On March 3, the Governor General will open a new session of Parliament, ending the recess created when the Harper government prorogued the previous session in December. All legislation that was under consideration at that time was extinguished, with the exception of private members’ bills, which return to the House, unscathed. These bills begin anew at whichever stage of the legislative process they had reached before the plug was pulled on Parliament.
Rethinking the international financial system during a time of crisis
On October 19 and 20, 2009, the Halifax Initiative held a conference, co-hosted by The North South Institute, the University of Ottawa and the School of International Development and Global Studies (SIDGS), entitled "What’s Missing in the Response to the Global Financial Crisis?" The meeting brought together experts from a range of backgrounds to analyze the challenges facing the global economy, discuss the ways in which the international community has responded to the current financial crisis, and identify shortcomings in these responses.
|Hon. James Flaherty
Minister of Finance
Department of Finance Canada
140 O’Connor Street
Ottawa, ON K1A 0G5
|Hon. Lawrence Cannon
Minister of Foreign Affairs
Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada
125 Sussex Drive
Ottawa, ON K1A 0G2
1st February 2010
Ref: Immediate debt cancellation for Haiti
Dear Ministers Flaherty and Cannon,
We are writing to commend the government’s efforts to date to mobilise emergency assistance for disaster relief in Haiti and for speaking to the urgency and importance of debt cancellation for the country. The call to cancel Haiti’s remaining multilateral debt, including last week’s highly concessional $102 million loan from the IMF, benefits from a strong Canadian voice. We urge you to keep demonstrating such leadership in the government’s interventions at the Bretton Woods Institutions, and at Haiti’s largest multilateral creditor, the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB).
CSOs push for Common Approaches revamp
Members of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) are currently reviewing a 2007 Council Recommendation regarding export credit agency (ECA) operations. The Recommendation on Common Approaches on the Environment and Officially Supported Export Credits (Common Approaches) is a “gentlemen’s agreement” that seeks to establish a level playing field regarding ECA environmental practice. CSOs argue that the Recommendation’s impact is undermined by the lack of effective accountability mechanisms to ensure consistent and effective application by member governments.
Volume V, Number 11— November 30, 2009
Corporate Accountability Hearings Heat Up
Corporate Accountability Hearings Heat Up
Things were hopping this month in Parliamentary hearings on Bill-300, An Act respecting Corporate Accountability for the Activities of Mining, Oil or Gas in Developing Countries (see IU February 2009). The Bill was presented before the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Development by MP John McKay on May 25. This month Committee members heard riveting testimony from diverse witnesses (see JUST THE FACTS). Speakers included: Romina Picolotti, former Secretary of the Environment for Argentina and winner of the prestigious Sophie Prize for environment and sustainable development; Stephen Hunt, former mine worker and current Director at the United Steelworkers union; Marketa Evans, the federal government’s new Corporate Social Responsibility Counsellor; and mining companies Barrick Gold, Goldcorp and Kinross.
November 11, 2009
International Monetary Fund,
700 19th Street, N.W.,
Washington, D.C. 20431
Dear Mr. Strauss-Kahn:
Re: Request for civil society participation in IMF study on how the financial sector can help pay for the bailouts
In September, the Group of 20 (G20), at their summit in Pittsburgh, mandated the International Monetary Fund (IMF) with preparing a report ahead of the next G20 summit in June 2010 to consider “how the financial sector could make a fair and substantial contribution toward paying for any burdens associated with government interventions to repair the banking system.”
In June 2010, the Halifax Initiative launched the first in a series of radio documentary -type podcasts under the rubric of "Definitely NOT the G8" just ahead of the 2010 Group of Eight (G8) and Twenty (G20) meetings in Huntsville and Toronto, Canada on June 25-27 2010.
The podcasts have three goals:
- to raise awareness in Canada about progressive social, economic and environmental justice issues in the international development and finance arena that are often missing from, or disregarded in, official discussions and the mainstream media;
Governance and institution - Global economic governance in crisis: new players, new power
Moderator: Gordon Betcherman, Professor, School of International Development and Global Studies, University of Ottawa