Welcome from the United Kingdom
The United Kingdom is honoured to chair the Group of Twenty in 2009.
Since 1999, the G-20 has contributed to strengthen the international financial architecture and to foster sustainable economic growth and development. The G-20 now has a crucial role in driving forward work between advanced and emerging economies to tackle the international financial and economic crisis, restore worldwide financial stability, lead the international economic recovery and secure a sustainable future for all countries.
The financial markets and the world economy continue to face serious global challenges and the severity of the crisis and ongoing uncertainties demonstrate the need for urgent action. During the United Kingdoms Chair, the immediate priority will be to gain further agreements for a concerted, co-ordinated international response.
The G-20 will need to send a strong signal that it is prepared to take whatever further actions are necessary to stabilise the financial system and to provide further macroeconomic support. At the same time, the G-20 must commit to maintaining open trade and investment, to avoid a retreat to protectionism, and direct necessary additional support to emerging markets and developing countries.
The G-20 should also lay the foundations to move beyond the crisis to a sustainable recovery. In 2009, it will be important to understand the roots of the international financial crisis and identify the lessons that we can learn to ensure that a crisis of this kind does not happen again. The G-20 should develop proposals that will restore global growth in the medium term, including the unwinding of emergency measures taken in response to the crisis.
In addition, we should also make progress on long-term issues such as climate change and international development.
In line with usual practice, the organisation of the G-20 events during the year will be shared between the Ministry of Finance and the Central Bank. We are looking forward to working closely and drawing on the valuable experience of our Troika colleagues, Brazil and South Korea, and the other G-20 members.
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