G8/G20 Summits: Unions urge world leaders to learn lessons of the past
Global Unions have released a statement to world leaders attending the G8/G20 Summits that will take place later this month in Canada.
The trade unions’ message calls on world leaders to create a new pattern in economic thinking and a "model of growth that is fairer, more environmentally sustainable and balanced between regions.”
The Statement will be delivered by a delegation of G20 trade union leaders on 18 June in Ottawa to the Canadian Prime Minister, Stephen Harper, who is hosting the G8 and G20 meetings and will play an important role in setting the agenda for negotiations.
The G8 Summit, which is for representatives of the most powerful economies in the world, will be held in Ontario from 25-27 June, and will be immediately followed by the G20 Summit in Toronto, where the G20’s Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors will bring together industrialised and developing economies to discuss key issues affecting the global economy. Both forums will focus on the theme: “Recovery and New Beginnings.”
The G8 Summit, for representatives of the most powerful economies in the world, will be held in Ontario from 25-27 June, and will be immediately followed by the G20 Summit in Toronto, where the Group of 20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors will bring together industrialised and developing economies to discuss key issues affecting the global economy. Both forums will focus on the theme: “Recovery and New Beginnings.”
The « Global Unions’ Statement to the G8/G20 Ontario Summits» asks governments for the development of new sources of finance, including a financial transactions tax, and focus on “combating tax evasion and tax heavens.” The Global Unions will also advise political leaders “to learn the lessons of the past” to ensure that “the International Monetary Fund stops promoting austere adjustment policies, together with conditions on loans that require the deregulation of labour markets and the weakening of worker protection.”
Within the trade union message, education is regarded as a key factor to sustain recovery. The document calls on G8 leaders, in particular, to mandate a high-level committee to draw up recommendations to achieve Education For All, develop relevant vocational education and training, hold a key meeting of G20 ministers on this topic in 2011, and launch a Global Partnership for Teacher Education.
The Global Unions’ statement also denounces the commitment of G20 Employment and Labour Ministers to Education For All as having failed “to mobilise the resources necessary to meet the financing needs of low-income partner countries.” It points out that in 2009 a number of G8 governments have significantly reduced their aid budgets, notably Italy, by 31.1 per cent, and Germany, by 12 per cent.
In this respect, the launch of a Global Partnership for Teacher Education is necessary “to mobilise financial and human resources in support of national initiatives to train qualified teachers and achieve quality education for all.”