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  • The creation of the Group of Twenty has been the most profound development in global governance

  • since the end of the Cold War. Three years after the institution's founding, it makes

  • sense to take a look at where it's been, and where it might be going. Hi. I'm Stewart Patrick,

  • and on this installment of The Internationalist, we'll be looking at five things you need to

  • know about the Group of Twenty.

  • The first thing you need to know is that the Group of Twenty has actually been around for

  • a while. In the wake of the Asian financial crisis in the late 1990s, Treasury Secretary

  • Larry Summers decided it would make sense to group together finance ministers and central

  • bank governors of the world's twenty most important economies. Now, this operated at

  • a pretty low level, though, for quite some time, out of the public gaze. But then in

  • November of 2008 in the depths of the global financial crisis, President George W. Bush

  • called the world leaders together to Washington in an extraordinary summit to try to save

  • the world from depression, and they succeeded. Over the course of several summits, they injected

  • huge quantities of liquidity into the global system, and prevented a meltdown that many

  • were expecting and avoided another great depression.

  • The second thing you need to know about the Group of Twenty is that things have gotten

  • a lot more complicated now that global economic stability has been restored, and national

  • interests are now beginning to reassert themselves. So you've got countries moving in different

  • directions. One of the major controversies that we face is the question of how to restore

  • some balance in the global economy and to deal with what have become structural imbalances.

  • Now the most important of these is the imbalance between countries that save too much, and

  • therefore build up huge currency reserves, and those countries that save too little,

  • and therefore build up huge debt. In the first category you have countries like China in

  • particular but also Germany; in the second category, the United States stands out as

  • Exhibit A. The question is: how should you apportion the burden of adjustment to get

  • things more equal?

  • The third thing that you really need to know is what the G20 has done is try to push reform

  • in other institutions to try to get them to reflect the world as it exists as opposed

  • to the world of 1945 when those institutions were created. One of the big things that the

  • United States has been pushing, and rather successfully, has been to change the governance

  • arrangements and the weighted voting in the International Monetary Fund to reflect the

  • rise of new countries like China, India, Saudi Arabia, and others. A lot of that has to come

  • at the expense of the Europeans, whose chairs on the executive board of that institution

  • and also whose voting weights or quotas have to go down. So it's been tremendously controversial

  • but there has been major progress made. Another point of progress has been in financial regulation.

  • Now, it can become incredible difficult to try to harmonize financial regulations across

  • the G20 countries, because of course they have twenty different banking systems but

  • nevertheless, there have been some major strides in trying to monitor and regulate the most

  • systemically important financial institutions, that is, those banks that are too big to fail.

  • And finally, the G20 has done a great job in fighting protectionism, which a lot of

  • people thought was going to break out in a rampant fashion at the height of the global

  • financial crisis. In fact, we've seen very little increases in discrimination whether

  • in tariffs or non-tariff barriers, and that's something we can all be thankful for.

  • The fourth issue is something people don't really know much about, but it's the fact

  • that the G20 has really empowered the International Monetary Fund. Now, before the financial crisis,

  • people had basically given up the fund for dead because it didn't seem relevant to the

  • major economic problems that the world faced. But in the wake of the financial crisis, suddenly

  • it's been given new life. Its coffers have been replenished by the G20 so that is actually

  • has a bigger warchest to work with when countries get into trouble, and it's actually been given

  • some authority to act as a watchdog, not only over other countries, but over the G20 members

  • themselves. This remains controversial. Countries like China really worry about this being an

  • infringement on their sovereignty but the fact that the G20 has allowed the IMF to monitor

  • the behavior of its own members and act in a surveillance fashion is really a reflection

  • that we just can't take for granted that countries will do what they say that they're going to

  • do. The global financial system is too fragile to operate without a watchdog.

  • Now, the final and biggest point that you need to know is that there's a big, big issue

  • about what the scope of the G20 should be going forward. Should it stick to its knitting,

  • which is something most G20 leaders want it to do, and avoid the sort of mission creep

  • that has affected the G7 and G8 before, or should it gradually expand the scope of its

  • activities? Now, I'm placing my bets on the fact that when you get twenty world leaders

  • into a room together, it's almost impossible to limit the agenda. I think it's inevitable

  • that as the G20 proceeds, that it's going to start taking on issues of climate change,

  • of high politics such as issues like the Arab Spring, nuclear non-proliferation, counter-terrorism,

  • you name it, because it's just going to be an irresistible format for leaders. What do

  • you think? Are you willing to take my wager? And if you do believe that it's going to expand

  • its agenda, what sort of issues do you think the G20 should take on? Should it, for instance,

  • take on the issue of Iran and its nuclear ambitions? We'd love to hear what you have

  • to think about these things. So please weigh in on The Internationalist blog on

The creation of the Group of Twenty has been the most profound development in global governance


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G20について知っておくべき5つのこと (Five Things to Know About the G20)

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    leo3590581 に公開 2021 年 01 月 14 日