Political changes in the West a challenge for Germany at G20 helm
Germany, the European Union’s largest economy, took over the presidency of the G20 on Thursday and is preparing to host the group’s 12th summit in Hamburg next summer, building on the results of the summit in Hangzhou, East China’s Zhejiang province, in September.
Germany has already signaled it will expand the G20 agenda by focusing more on African development, climate change, the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, healthcare and digitalization. This is an encouraging trend.
However, looking carefully at the political landscape in the West it seems the rich countries may once again play a disruptive role in the G20 process.
At the G20 summit in 2008, the leading rich and emerging economies began a process of Western-inspired crisis management to achieve economic stability after the collapse of US financial giant Lehman Brothers. With those goals basically achieved, the G20 became a global platform where other issues such as development, climate change, sustainability, labor and even women’s rights are now debated.
The wide sweep of the G20 agenda can be seen in the constructive outcome reached and the commitments contained in the communiqué issued by G20 summit in Hangzhou. In terms of global governance, it is a positive sign when the South and North sit down to coordinate policies for growth, development and prosperity. Germany can learn from these outcomes as it begins its one-year G20 presidency.