UN representative points to Beijing’s global leadership
A rich package of policy actions in line with the Chinese G20 presidency’s priorities are expected to be among the outcomes of the G20 Summit, G20 Sherpa Lenni Montiel said.
The package includes “breaking a new path for growth, more effective and efficient global economic and financial governance, robust international trade and investment and inclusive and interconnected development”, said Montiel, who is assistant secretarygeneral for economic development in the United Nations’ Department of Economic and Social Affairs.
The summit on Sunday and Monday , hosted by China for the first time, will take as its theme “Toward an Innovative, Invigorated, Interconnected and Inclusive World Economy”.
One of the major concrete deliverables of the summit, Montiel said, is the G20 Action Plan on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which is making its first appearance at a G20 gathering.
“It signifies the G20 effort to further align its work with the UN development agenda,” Montiel said. “It commits G20 members to a range of collective and individual actions to implement the 2030 Agenda, including the Sustainable Development Goals and the Addis Ababa Action Agenda on financing for development.”
The 2030 Agenda was unanimously adopted by all 193 UN member states last September. It aims to end poverty worldwide in 15 years.
Montiel said he also expects the G20 Summit in Hangzhou will have a positive impact on the implementation of China’s 13th Five-Year Plan (2016-20).
“The plan outlines a vision that is very much in line with this summit’s thematic emphasis on innovation, invigoration, interconnectivity and inclusiveness,” he said.
Since 2008, the G20 group has played a critical role in coordinating an international policy response to the global financial crisis. Yet, the global economy is still facing considerable longterm structural challenges, such as weakness in growth and productivity, demographic transition and climate change.
“It is encouraging that under China’s presidency, the G20 is addressing these longer-term challenges to sustainable development,” said Montiel, who also serves as the UN’s G20 finance deputy.
He said that improving the representation of countries within the G20 framework will remain crucial to strengthen the group’s legitimacy and credibility.
In the short run, expansion of outreach can be done on an issue-by-issue basis to ensure timely and effective actions by the G20, he said.
Montiel spoke highly of China for inviting the largest number of developing countries to the G20 activities this year. China has invited Chad, chair of the African Union; Laos, chair of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations; Senegal, chair of the New Partnership for Africa’s Development; and Egypt and Kazakhstan to participate in all G20 work this year.
“Enhancing the representation of developing countries in G20 activities is a very positive step taken by China during its presidency,” Montiel said. “In addition, China has brought greater attention to the economic challenges confronting developing countries that are not adequately addressed within the traditional global economic governance system.”
He said China has helped address the concerns of the least-developed countries by championing the G20 Initiative on Supporting Industrialization in Africa and LDCs. This initiative has great potential to promote job creation, sustainable livelihoods, technology, skills development, food security and equitable growth in the most vulnerable countries.
“These initiatives will help to strengthen the credibility and effectiveness of the G20, which is essential for promoting multilateral policy coordination, not only among the G20 members but also beyond,” Montiel said.
Lenni Montiel, United Nations official