Recommendations for Los Cabos, Mexico Summit

 

G20 leaders meeting in Los Cabos, Mexico in June must take bold steps to encourage good governance and transparency and remove impediments for economic growth which further impoverish the world’s most vulnerable populations. This policy paper, compiled by a G8/G20 Task Force consisting of more than 40 non-governmental organizations, offers recommendations on core areas from food security and climate change to anti-corruption efforts. Task force members represent NGOs, think tanks and trade unions, all with the same goal of fighting poverty and making governments more accountable and transparent. The current financial crisis has affected G20 members’ commitments to developing nations. The United States should play a leading role in encouraging the G20 to take the following steps:

Food Security, Agriculture and Nutrition

1. Scale up investment in social protection and safety net programs to blunt shocks from food crises and prioritize investments that improve nutrition and reach small-scale producers.

2. Integrate civil society partnerships with a gender analysis and resilience to climate change into food security plans.

3. Abandon biofuel mandates and subsidies in order to help reduce food price volatility.

4. Adopt rules that would, like the Dodd-Frank legislation, institute position limits and requirements for transparency on commodity speculation, especially those labeled “over the counter.”

5. Support efforts to create a comprehensive code of conduct for food reserves to determine the viability and potential benefits of strategic buffer food reserves in countries vulnerable to food price volatility.

Anti-Corruption

1. Implement and enforce laws criminalizing foreign bribery and prohibiting off-book accounts by the end of 2012.

2. Strengthen “no safe haven” and asset recovery policies and deny non-cooperative jurisdictions access to G20 financial systems.

3. Take practical steps towards establishing transparent, accountable public financial management systems, including for budget and procurement, by the end of 2012.

Climate Change

1. Support limiting the increase of global average temperatures to as far as possible below 2 degrees C, and ensuring that by 2050 emissions are at least 80 percent below 1990 levels.

2. Call for the ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organization) and the IMO (International Maritime Organization) to develop revenue-raising, market-based mechanisms (emissions trading systems or levies) for the international maritime and aviation sectors by the end of 2013, with revenues used for international climate finance; and supports ensuring "no net incidence" (i.e., burden) on developing countries’ economies.

3. Commit G20 members to concrete steps to create and implement a global financial transaction tax that would help fund a number of global priorities, including climate change and poverty alleviation programs in the Global South.

4. Agree to develop implementation action plans with clear timelines and transparent reporting on implementation of their commitments to reform fossil fuel subsidies.

5. Revise the G20 criteria for selecting regional projects proposed by the High Level Panel on Infrastructure to emphasize environmental and social sustainability as threshold criteria.

Financial Inclusion

The U.S. should lead the G20 in ensuring that the Financial Stability Board and the Global Partnership for Financial Inclusion target the following priorities in their work:

1. Promote collaboration among a diverse group of stakeholders when creating national financial inclusion strategies.

2. Ensure national financial inclusion targets set by policymakers include a full range of financial services and involve marginalized groups.

3. Promote a focus on addressing client needs within financial inclusion policies.

4. Establish comprehensive national identification documentation and credit bureaus that can provide coverage for all citizens. 

5. Support and incorporate lessons from the microfinance industry’s efforts on client protection.

Accountability

1. Establish a permanent G20 Accountability Framework. To enhance credibility and ensure effectiveness the framework must be rigorous, transparent and inclusive.

2. Publicize the terms of reference, names and affiliation of all members of Expert and Working Groups six months prior to each Summit, release meeting notices in advance, and list G20 commitments and outcomes under review.

3. Require all G20 Working Groups to seek input from international organizations, governments and civil society on a regular basis.

4. Ensure reporting evaluates results against consistent and specific indicators with timetables and recommendations for future action.