07 November 2009
In 2009, the UK has held the Presidency of the G20. The G20 is made up of 19 major economies and the EU. The UK took over the Presidency as the world was going through its biggest economic and financial crisis in decades. Under the chairmanship of the UK, the G20 has worked to ensure that the global economy recovers from the crisis and returns to strong, sustainable and balanced economic growth.
It has been an unprecedented year for the G20, which has seen it established as the premier forum for international economic cooperation. The UK has chaired a number of meetings during the course of the year. G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors meet in Horsham in March to prepare for the G20 Leaders’ London Summit in April 2009, and reassembled at HM Treasury in September to prepare for the Leader’s Pittsburgh Summit in September. G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors met for a final time under the UK’s Presidency in St Andrews in November to take stock of the progress that has been made on their commitments, and to prepare the handover to the Republic of Korea’s Presidency in 2010.
At the London Summit in April, world leaders committed to do whatever is necessary to get the world economy back in a good state. To achieve this, leaders agreed a number of important actions, including:
- Making available a $1.1 trillion programme of support to help the world economy through the crisis and to restore credit, growth and jobs;
- A large package of reforms to the global financial system to make the system much stronger and stable in the future;
- Principles to guide countries when dealing with the bad assets that caused the financial crisis, so that banks can once again provide the lending that firms and households rely on.
At the Pittsburgh Summit in September, leaders agreed to keep working together to secure the recovery of the world economy, whilst preparing a plan to ensure a strong and growing world economy in the future. To achieve this, they agreed a number of actions, including:
- A commitment to support the world economy until the recovery is secured, and agreement of a compact for global growth which established the G20 Framework for Strong, Sustainable and Balanced Growth;
- Addressing the bonus culture in the financial sector and minimise excessive risk-taking, and approval of a new set of principles put forward by the Financial Stability Board;
- Reforming the international financial institutions so that they can best meet the needs of the new global economy.
The final meeting took place on 7 November in St Andrews. G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors:
- Launched the G20 Framework for Strong, Sustainable and Balanced Growth, and initiated a new consultative mutual assessment process to support it;
- Agreed to continue to provide support for the global economy until recovery is secured and continue to strengthen the global financial system, whilst also developing further strategies for managing the withdrawal of extraordinary measures;
- Committed to take action to tackle the threat of climate change, and recognised the need to significantly increase the scale and predictability of climate finance. They committed to take forward further work to define financing options and institutional arrangements.
The economic and financial crisis has been of an unprecedented scale and has affected countries across the world. To ensure that the recovery of the world economy is strong, sustainable and balanced, it has been critical for major economies to work together. The G20 rose to the occasion, and in the spirit of cooperation has successfully begun to tackle the causes of the crisis. The challenge now is to maintain the momentum generated this year. The UK is committed to continuing to play its full part in international efforts.
For more information about the G20 and the UK’s presidency, visit the G20 website.
The G20 Communiqués and objectives are available in Adobe Acrobat Portable Document Format (PDF). If you do not have Adobe Acrobat installed on your computer you can download the software free of charge from the Adobe website. For alternative ways to read PDF documents and further information on website accessibility visit the HM Treasury accessibility page.
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