Schlagwort: Axel Berger

G20 Summit in Osaka – The Drought Years of International Cooperation

Photo: Bridge in Osaka at nightThe G20 has been mired in an ongoing crisis for years. After the G20, newly formed ten years ago at the level of heads of state and government, initially overcame the economic and financial crisis more or less successfully, the question quickly arose as to its role beyond reacting to crisis. Instead of taking on a proactive role as a strategic steering committee for the global economy, driving reforms and ensuring the provision of global public goods (such as climate protection and free trade), the G20 proceeded to jump from one issue to the next. The fact that its presidency changes every year has contributed to this ‘issue hopping’.

Investment Facilitation – A New Governance Approach to Promote Foreign Direct Investment for Sustainable Development

Photo by WTO/Flickr (altered) https://www.flickr.com/photos/world_trade_organization/38338987184/in/album-72157690815449785/

In order to reach the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), enormous amounts of investments are needed in areas like health, education, infrastructure, and the adaptation to climate change. To harness the advantages of foreign direct investment (FDI), it is critical that governments have policies and regulations in place that do not only help to attract and retain FDI but also enhance its contribution to sustainable development. In this context, discussions about the establishment of an international framework for investment facilitation have intensified in recent years.

The year ahead in 2019 – Think local when acting globally

Photo: Bridge and GlasballFor 2019, the global challenges are unlikely to become fewer than in 2018, based on the past experiences. The post-cold war international order as we knew it has taken a few blows again in 2018. Some key pillars and narratives are being shifted and challenge the stability of the international architecture. As often with foreign relations, it takes place in a context that consists of both global challenges and domestic priorities. Indicators for change will thus be located in domestic politics of some key countries. Without wanting to sound overly optimistic for a surely difficult year to come, some elements for a change are visible.

The G20 after the Buenos Aires Summit: It’s still relevant!

Photo: G20 Argentina Group

The assessments of global summits seem to be measured by new minimum standards, given the current state of international cooperation: The G20 concluded its summit in Buenos Aires on 1 December 2019 without any significant ruptures and with a joint declaration. This outcome was all but self-evident, after President Trump withdrew his consent to the communiqué of the last G7 Summit in Charlevoix, Canada, via Twitter while flying back to Washington. And at the recent APEC summit, the US and China clashed over trade issues and the meeting ended without a joint declaration – usually a diplomatic given. The recent intensification of the tensions between Russia and Ukraine as well as the international outcry against the killing of the Saudi government’s critic Jamal Khashoggi added to the challenges. G20 summitry watchers were therefore all but certain that the Buenos Aires summit could be concluded in an orderly fashion. It is a success for the Argentinian host that it did despite all the headwind.

International Economic Cooperation in Troubled Times: A Call for Strong Action by the G20


The leaders of the G20 will meet on 30 November and 1 December in Buenos Aires for their annual summit. They need to acknowledge that the last two years have been characterized by strong headwinds for the world economy. This time, however, it is not a mixture of poor macroeconomic policies and bad business decisions – as in 2008 when they met in Washington for their first summit – that endangers the well-being of billions of citizens around the globe. This time the threat stems from deliberate political decisions, in particular on trade.