G77+China urges to create a new financial architecture in the face of crisis and inequality

G77+China urges to create a new financial architecture in the face of crisis and inequality

HAVANA, Sept. 17  Leaders of more than a hundred developing countries, representing 80% of the world’s population, closed a summit in Cuba on Saturday demanding that the powers support the creation of a new international financial architecture in the face of the worsening of the crisis due to the pandemic and the technological gap.

Some 114 delegations of the Group of 77 + China forum, a mechanism created in the 1960s and which retained its name despite the increase in its initial membership, met on Friday and Saturday in Havana.

“There are two great transformations underway,” said the Brazilian president, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, on the closing day in relation to the digital revolution on the one hand and energy changes at a global level.

And “they cannot be shaped by a handful of rich economies, re-editing the relationship of dependency between the center and the periphery.”

The southern countries must “act together again, as we did in the past,” to move forward in these two challenges, Lula added.

The day before, the Secretary General of the UN, Antonio Guterres, opened the debates by demanding that world powers create a more just order and even considered that developing nations were being “failed.”

The G77 + China is precisely a forum for global coordination of ideas and policies that will later be brought to the heart of the United Nations.

According to the hosts, who hold the temporary presidency of the G77+China until the end of the year and will be succeeded by Uganda in the position by 2024, the delegations showed similarities in analysis regarding the diagnosis of the current situation and the need to act.

“There is agreement on the need to undertake an urgent and profound reform of the archaic international financial architecture so that it is truly representative and addresses the legitimate claims of developing countries,” Rodolfo Benítez, the director of Multilateral Affairs of the Cuban Foreign Ministry.

During these days, leaders from all continents and the most diverse nations spoke, from the Colombian Gustavo Petro and his neighbor the Venezuelan Nicolás Maduro or the Honduran Xiomara Castro, to the Palestinian Mahmoud Abbas or the Iranian vice president for science affairs, Ruhollad Dehghani Firouz Abadi.

Many of the attendees also made regional or national claims regarding demands to the great powers.

Li Xi, a member of the Central Committee of the Communist Party, intervened for China, and assured that his government “remains committed to promoting technological change that allows reducing digital gaps.”

The motto of the Summit was “Current development challenges: role of science, technology and innovation” and the idea is to seek to bring positions closer to the debates at the United Nations.

A final declaration was approved by the delegations shortly before closing on Saturday. The document emphasizes the “concern” of nations about the current “unfair” world order for the populations of developing countries that was exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, which is why it underlines “the urgent need for a comprehensive reform of the international financial architecture” that is more “inclusive”.

Along these lines, the text rejected the unilateral measures or embargoes that rich nations usually impose on underdeveloped nations seeking to pressure them, as well as what it described as technological monopolies that leave these states even further behind.

At the same time, he proposed broader financing for technological issues in poor countries and greater cooperation between southern nations themselves. He also proposed a special United Nations meeting on these aspects.

The summit was held in Cuba at a time when the Caribbean country was suffering a strong economic crisis derived from the pandemic crisis and the increase in United States sanctions.

Many of the delegations took advantage of these days to meet with President Miguel Díaz-Canel or his officials from strategic areas such as energy, biotechnology, or agriculture, the last of them was precisely Lula, who was received at the Palace of the Revolution, the headquarters of the government, at the end of the multilateral forum.