Trade policy headlines are dominated today by the ups and downs of the United States-China relationship, the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and the Brexit process. There is concern on the effects that disintegrating closely linked economic partners could have on growth, jobs, supply chains, and consumers. The perils of a return to unilateralism and power-based mechanisms threaten the relevance of the World Trade Organization (WTO).
Since its inception in 1961, the German-Pakistani relationship on development cooperation has become stronger with the passage of time. While the role of development cooperation has been significant in various sectors, there is a need to further expand and strengthen bilateral relationships in the areas of trade and investment that are equally significant for achieving sustainable development outcomes.
Working together after Brexit: why and how Germany, the EU and the UK can continue to collaborate on international development
Congratulations to Germany, first of all, on reaching 0.7. That is an achievement. We know that 25% of ODA (Official Development Assistance) in 2016 was spent on refugee costs in Germany, a fact that some German commentators have been very keen to publicise. However, we all hope 0.7 will be sustained when refugee costs begin to fall. It is an important signal of commitment, and we know it has influenced others (including France) who have yet to reach the target.
China and Germany have developed a remarkable bilateral relationship over many years. Although China still needs support from Germany in many areas, it is now time for China and Germany to build a new partnership via development cooperation modalities to contribute to global sustainable development.
Much of the criticism levelled at the Group of 20 (G20), the club of the world’s most economically powerful industrialised and emerging economies, is justified. The Hamburg summit will play host to high-level autocrats and, in many ways, its agenda is far removed from the needs and standards of a just, inclusive and sustainable global economy. Policy advisors still hoping for the gathering to deliver in some way are banking on an initiative supported by the EU countries and their civil societies in cooperation with several partners from the global South, an initiative designed to promote sustainability solidarity and participation.