The Group of 20 (G20) Leaders’ Summit, which took place in China recently,
provided a platform to further the interests of developing countries.
At the conclusion of the summit, President Jacob Zuma said more emphasis has to be placed on innovation,
fair trade and investment as the fundamentals of sustainable and inclusive growth. “
Our trade and investment policies should be designed to enable countries to improve competitiveness
and gain access to markets to successfully participate in the global economy,” said the President.
He called for the strengthening of the World Trade Organisation as the principal body to negotiate trade-related matters.
This entailed working towards the early conclusion of the Doha Development Agenda,
in line with the development mandate and improving market access for exports of developing countries.
The G20 Leaders’ Summit, which took place in the Chinese city of Hangzhou, was held under the theme,
“Towards an Innovative, Invigorated, Interconnected and Inclusive World Economy”.
It focused on new strategies and innovations to boost the global economy. Under this theme,
the G20 leaders discussed specific priority areas such as carving a new path for growth,
more effective and efficient global economic and financial governance, robust international trade and investment, inclusive
and interconnected development, and other issues affecting the world such as anti-microbial resistance (AMR).
Curbing illicit financial flows On the issue of inclusive and interconnected development, President Zuma said that industrialisation, infrastructure development,
intra-Africa trade and curbing illicit financial flows are crucial goals for the development of the African continent, as stipulated in Agenda 2063.
South Africa’s proposal that illicit financial flows from trade mispricing must be studied by the World Trade Organisation was accepted.
This challenge, if addressed, has the potential to unlock millions of dollars that could be used
by African governments to implement the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and their development programmes.
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