Zuma attends G20 in St Petersburg

G20russiaPresident Jacob Zuma has arrived in St Petersburg, Russian Federation for the G20 Leaders’ Summit.

A meeting of BRICS Leaders was scheduled, giving leaders an opportunity to reflect on the progress made with regards to the implementation of the eThekwini Declaration, notably receiving progress reports in respect of the New Development Bank and the Contingent Reserve Arrangement.

President Zuma is accompanied by the Minister of Finance, Mr. Pravin Gordhan, and the Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Ms. Maite Nkoana-Mashabane.

The primary objectives of the G20 are to facilitate policy coordination in order to achieve global economic stability and promote long-term sustainable growth.

South Africa’s participation in the G20 is guided by national interests and the primacy of the African Agenda. South Africa therefore seeks to use its participation in multilateral fora such as the G20 to promote and strengthen the interests of the African continent and those of the Southern hemisphere. In this regard, the G20 presents meaningful opportunities for advancing much-needed global governance reforms and orienting the international development agenda.

G20 countries account for 85 percent of global economic output, 80 percent of global trade, and two-thirds of the world’s population.

It is envisaged that the G20 Summit will focus on a set of measures aimed at boosting sustainable, inclusive and balanced global growth, including the creation of decent jobs. During its tenure as G20 President, Russia has focused its work on the interconnected issues on the G20 agenda around three priorities, which are intended to promote:

* Growth through quality jobs and investment;

* Growth through trust and transparency; and

* Growth through effective regulation.

Unemployment and ongoing problems and vulnerabilities in the global economy were discussed by Brics leaders on the margins of the G20 summit in Russia on Thursday, the presidency said.

“[We] believe that major economies, including the G20, could do more to boost global demand and market confidence,” said President Jacob Zuma, who chairs Brics — which consists of the Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa group of emerging economies.

The leaders reiterated the concerns they expressed at the Durban Brics summit in March about the unintended negative spill-overs of the unconventional monetary policies of certain developed economies.

“[We] recalled the urgent need to implement the 2010 International Monetary Fund quota and governance reform, as well as to complete the next general quota review by January 2014, as agreed at the G20 Seoul summit in order to ensure the fund’s credibility, legitimacy, and effectiveness,” said Zuma.

Brics looked forward to the ninth World Trade Organisation ministerial conference, to be held in December.

“[We] expect that it will be a stepping stone to the successful and balanced conclusion of the Doha Development Round,” Zuma said.

The leaders also congratulated Russia on successfully hosting the G20 summit, which started on Thursday and runs until Friday. – Sapa