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G20 Does Not Excel at Ending Poverty Despite Resource Pledges

ADVOCACY SATURDAY: “The additional IMF funds announced for poor countries are welcome but they cannot be tied with conditions as has happened in the past. The language in the G20’s communiqué currently leaves too much room for manoeuvre on this and other areas like addressing climate change,” said Kumi Naidoo, Co-Chair of the Global Call to Action Against Poverty alliance at the close of the G20 in London’s Excel centre today.

While the G20 claims consensus was reached and mechanisms to control the financial markets now exist, GCAP is sceptical that the detail in the agreement is sufficient to protect the most vulnerable people, especially women and children.

“Remember that these past decades of excess in the rich world have not been decades of success in the developing world and you cannot fix in one day what has been broken for more than 30 years. The root and branch reform of the financial system we were looking for is missing in this outcome. More pressure will be needed to ensure something happens in the months ahead so soaring hunger levels are really tackled,” added Naidoo, one of 40 international bloggers attending the summit.

GCAP, the world’s largest anti-poverty alliance, has been lobbying for months so that the G20 agreed measures towards poverty eradication and in keeping with their Millennium Goals promises. The GCAP Feminist Taskforce launched 20 Days of Action online earlier in March as part of the build-up and thousands took part in rallies and direct lobby actions worldwide. The result is that while there has been an increase in credit access for poor countries and the push given to non-protectionism in trade is welcome, the voices and greater participation of developing countries has not been facilitated nor has space been made for this to happen down the line.

Looking Ahead

GCAP will continue to mobilise anti-poverty campaigners to monitor the pledges in the months ahead at the;

  • IMF and World Bank Spring Meetings, Washington DC, April
  • Special High-level Meeting of the Economic and Social Council with the Bretton Woods Institutions, World Trade Organization and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, April
  • UN Conference on the Financial and Economic Crisis and its Impact on Development, NYC, UN, June
  • G8, Italy, July
  • UN Climate Change Conference, Copenhagen, December

For more information or to book an interview with a GCAP blogger at the G20 contact; Helena Suarez, Cel + 44 750 756 20 26 helena.suarez@ whiteband. org or Irene Ndiritu, Cel + 44 754 336 27 51 , Irene.ndiritu@ whiteband. org

GCAP Bloggers at the G20 - Helena Suarez (Latin America), Lani Villanueva, (Philippines), Swati Sahi (India), Kumi Naidoo (South Africa) as well as Luisa Cruz, Rajiv Joshi and Irene Ndiritu outside the Excel Centre in London. Links to their blogs on www.whiteband. org

Ciara OSullivan
Media Coordinator, Global Call to Action Against Poverty (GCAP)
Cel: +34 679 594 809
Office: +34 915239865
ciara.osullivan@ whiteband. org
www.whiteband. org

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