Views of the Los Cabos G-20 Summit from the Capitals

Image: Flickr, Herman Van Rompuy
Image: Flickr, Herman Van Rompuy

The Centre for International Governance Innovation, in association with the Brookings Institution, has just released the latest in their series of "National Perspectives on Global Leadership" (NPGL), on the 2012 G-20 Summit.

The national media in the 12 G-20 capitals in this NPGL “sounding” reflected a mixed but clear picture of outcomes from the Mexico G-20 summit held in Los Cabos on June 18-19, 2012. The euro crisis did not overwhelm the G-20 summit in 8 of the 12 capitals, although portrayals in Australia, South Africa, Indonesia and the United States led to the opposite conclusion. The Financial Stability Board (FSB) report to the G-20 on financial regulatory reform received virtually no attention in any of the capitals, except for a forthcoming statement by Canadian Mark Carney, the head of the FSB, that appeared in Canada’s The Globe and Mail.

While green growth received no or very little attention in 8 of the 12 capitals, with news outlets in Mexico, Germany, Indonesia and China giving the issue some attention, it did receive significant attention at the Business 20 (B20) summit.

Other issues surfacing for public attention in these G20 capitals were resources for, and reform of, the International Monetary Fund (IMF), food security and trade.

The implication of these results seems to be that financial regulatory reform has fallen from the public interest “radar screen,” despite the fact that key elements of the reform agenda remain incomplete. Green growth seems to be a work in progress both in the G-20 and the B20 and in the wake of the Rio+20 UN conference, providing opportunities for a more focused definition and a stronger agenda for implementation.

This overview speculates whether the domestic public pressure for political reform in Russia, the need for further strengthening of global governance reforms in the G-20 and the IMF, the need for attention in crucial areas such as energy, global growth and rebalancing, and the push for financial regulatory reform might not dovetail during the Russian G-20 presidency in 2013 to create a complementary force field for Russian leadership on both domestic and international reform next year.

29 Jul 2012