Main results of G20 summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina

G20 Argentina

Copyright: European Union Event: EU @ G20 Summit 2018

This article is brought to you in association with the European Council.


G20 leaders met in Buenos Aires on 30 November and 1 December 2018

They adopted a declaration focusing on the future of work, infrastructure for development, a sustainable food future and on gender equality.

Donald Tusk, President of the European Council, and Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission, represented the EU at the summit. Argentina’s President, Mauricio Macri, hosted the summit.

The EU was an important advocate of multilateralism and the international rules-based trade at the summit.

The 2018 edition marked the 10th anniversary of an international forum setup to better coordinate economic and financial policies in response to the global crisis in 2008.

The summit was also an opportunity to build a positive trade agenda and to reconfirm political support among G20 leaders to reform the World Trade Organisation (WTO) in order to improve its efficiency and functioning.

“The system is currently falling short of its objectives and there is room for improvement. We therefore support the necessary reform of the WTO to improve its functioning. We will review progress at our next summit.”

G20 Leaders’ Declaration, Buenos Aires

Global challenges were also on the agenda. Leaders focused on the fight against climate change. 

They noted the outcome of the last IPCC report ahead of the COP24 meeting in December 2018. Signatories of the Paris Agreement reconfirmed their commitment to its full implementation

They also discussed sustainable development, including the 2030 agenda and sustainable development goals. They confirmed they will continue to work together to seek a consensus-based solution to address the impacts of the digitalisation of the economy on the international tax system with an update in 2019 and a final report by 2020.

The G20 leaders condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestations. They committed to the full implementation of The Hamburg G20 Leaders Statement on Countering Terrorism.

“We will step up our efforts in fighting terrorist and proliferation financing, and money laundering. We urge the digital industry to work together to fight exploitation of the internet and social media for terrorist purposes.”

G20 Leaders’ Declaration, Buenos Aires

EU coordination meeting

The leaders of the EU countries present at the G20 held their coordination meeting in the margins of the summit. In the context of the killing of the Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, they agreed the urgent need to establish what happened on 2 October 2018.

Ahead of the summit, President Tusk urged the G20 leaders to address pressing issues such as trade wars and the Russian aggression in Ukraine:

“I see no reason why the G20 leaders shouldn’t have a meaningful discussion about solving these problems. Especially because all the instruments lie in their hands. The only condition is good will. We also cannot underestimate other issues which remain difficult for some leaders, such as human rights, freedom of press and basic safety of journalists.”

Remarks by President Donald Tusk ahead of the G20 summit

About the G20 presidency

Argentina currently holds the G20’s presidency. Its theme is “building consensus for fair and sustainable development’ with 4 key priorities:

  • the future of work
  • infrastructure for development
  • food security
  • gender equality

The previous G20 summit took place in Hamburg in July 2017:

Background

The G20 brings together 19 countries plus the EU. G20 members account for over 80% of the world’s gross domestic product (GDP) and they host almost two-thirds of the world’s population.

The G20 was established in 2008 amidst the global financial crisis to increase international economic cooperation. Since then, G20 members have been meeting annually to discuss a wide range of issues related to economic and financial cooperation.

The EU as a G20 member

The European Union is a full member of the G20 alongside four of its member states: France, Germany, Italy and the United Kingdom. In addition, Spain is a permanent invitee of the G20.

The EU has its own seat at the G20 table as it is one of the largest global economic areas with specific competences in trade matters, economic policy and financial regulation, development, energy and climate change.

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