The official website of the G-20 for 2007 is here
. South Africa will chair the important political grouping, which may be seen to have more legitimacy than the G8.
SA's theme for its host year is ‘Sharing - Influence, Responsibility, Knowledge’.The programme begins with a continuation of the current efforts to ensure that the Bretton Woods Institutions remain relevant and effective to and for all member countries in coming years. The second element of the work programme will seek to share experiences and views on the impact of high commodity prices on economic growth, macroeconomic management and the implications for countries’ financial systems. Finally, the 2007 work programme includes an analysis of the fiscal elements of growth and development, which looks at how countries utilise fiscal space to enhance national developmental objectives. The rise in commodity prices over the past few years has contributed positively and negatively to G-20 economies in various ways. South Africa will also use the opportunity of its host year to improve and strengthen knowledge, within the forum, of African economic and financial policy challenges – and to facilitate a sharing of knowledge with the African countries.
The Institute for International Economics, based in Washington, commented on the increasing legitimacy of the G20 over a year ago - see comments
1. From the Australian press in October 2006, Geeing up to shape the global economy
:Mark Thirlwell and Malcolm Cook from the Lowy Institute sum it up this way in a policy brief, Geeing Up the G20: "The most fundamental shortcoming of the current international economic architecture is that it fails to adequately represent the make-up of the new global economy. Most of the existing structure was created at a time when the centre of world economic gravity spanned the Atlantic Ocean and was anchored by western Europe and North America. In the (past) two decades, the geographic distribution of economic power has shifted, with a much larger role both for key emerging markets and for the Asian region."A look through recent G7 communiques shows its inability to deal with the issues that it identifies as important. These include global economic imbalances, oil prices, exchange rate flexibility, the Doha Round of world trade negotiations and energy security.
2. Regarding global energy
and the G20, an Australian think tank - the Lowy Institute for International Policy - published a policy brief in November 2006. The research was titled 'New Rules for a New 'Great Game': Northeast Asian Energy Insecurity and the G20'.
The conclusion was:
a) To ensure that energy security does not become a global strategic problem the international community needs to promote the efficient functioning of energy markets, encourage international cooperation regarding political and strategic questions surrounding enegy extraction and transportation, and build consensual rules for the energy diplomacy 'game'.
b) The G20 should take a leading role in these efforts
by building on its existing resource security agenda and network of workshops, perhaps complementing them with one and a half track and second track working groups, and bringing together experts from strategic, foreign policy and economic fields.
3. The G8 should abolish itself