News / Americas

G20 Commits to Deficit Reduction Time Line

Multimedia

Audio

Leaders of the Group of 20 meeting in Toronto, Canada have agreed that the world's most advanced industrialized countries should reduce their budget deficits by half within three years, with further steps to cut debt relative to economic output by 2016.

The G20, which includes major industrialized powers in the Group of Eight plus developing nations with significant economies such as China and India, agreed to a specific time line for deficit reduction, while giving governments flexibility to adjust the pace of changes based on their own situations.

A plan promoted by host Canada will have the most advanced countries cut their budget deficits in half by 2013.  By 2016, governments would be required to stabilize or begin reducing the percentage of their debt as measured against total gross domestic product, the value of all goods and services produced in a given country.

Canada's Prime Minister Stephen Harper, who in opening the summit said nations are walking an economic "tightrope," noted that the G20 declaration leaves room for continuing stimulus measures and steps to bring down debt.  

"All leaders recognize that fiscal consolidation is not an end in itself," he said. "There will be a continued role for ongoing stimulus in the short-term as we develop the framework for strong, sustainable and balanced growth."

The declaration calls recovery so far from the global economic crisis uneven and fragile, with unemployment at unacceptable levels in many countries.  It says unprecedented and globally coordinated fiscal and monetary stimulus is playing a major role in helping to restore private demand and lending.

Saying serious challenges remain, G20 leaders recognize the risks to recovery from fiscal adjustment across several major economies.  But they add that failure to implement fiscal consolidation where it is needed could undermine confidence and hamper growth.

President Barack Obama and other U.S. officials argued strongly at the summit against any early slowing of stimulus spending by governments, saying that it might bring about a second global recession.

In his concluding news conference, the president was asked about divisions on this issue.  He said the declaration reflects policies that the United States has promoted and addresses a range of needs.

"In each country, what we have to recognize is that the recovery is still fragile, that we still have more work to do to make this recovery durable," he said.  "But we also have to recognize that if markets are skittish and don't have confidence that we can tackle the tough problems of our medium- and long-term debt and deficits, then that also is going to undermine our recovery."

The president said the declaration shows that G20 nations can bridge their differences and coordinate approaches while continuing to focus on durable growth that puts people to work and broadens prosperity.

The G20 declaration recognizes U.S. concerns, saying that sustaining economic recovery requires nations to follow through on delivering existing stimulus plans, while working to create the conditions for robust private demand.

On other key issues, European nations such as Britain, France and Germany failed to win G20 agreement for new taxes on banks as part of efforts to discourage excessive risk-taking that could lead to another financial crisis.  The declaration leaves such a tax up to individual members.

G20 nations pledge a medium-term phase out of what they call inefficient fossil fuel subsidies, although this would take into account what they call vulnerable groups and their development needs.   

Where the world's poorest countries are concerned, the G20 says that narrowing the development gap and reducing poverty are integral to a broader objective of achieving strong, sustainable and balanced growth.

At the last of bilateral meetings at the G20, Mr. Obama met on Sunday with Indonesia's President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, India's Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Japan's Prime Minister Naoto Kan.

President Obama discussed the U.S.-India Strategic Partnership, and joint efforts on climate change.  Mr. Obama said he looks forward to his trip to India in November.  Prime Minister Singh called President Obama a "role model for billions and billions of people" around the world.   

After the G20, President Obama returns to Washington, where he will be waiting for Congress to give final approval to legislation that will impose sweeping new regulations on the U.S. financial system.  

G20 leaders say they look forward to their next meetings - in Seoul, South Korea in November, and next year in France.  Mexico assumes the G20 chairmanship in 2012.

You May Like

Ukraine: Mysterious 'Roaming Tank' Reportedly Takes Aim at Smugglers

Ukraine's TV, print media, Facebook abuzz with reports a 'roaming tank' is on the loose, destroying vehicles of those involved in smuggling More

US Wildlife Service Begins Probe of Killing of Cecil the Lion

Minnesota man accused of killing beast is in hiding, has been asked to contact US officials; White House to review extradition petition More

Video Kerry Tour Will Cover Security, Iran Nuclear Deal

US secretary of state to visit 5 countries in the Middle East, South Asia in bid to strengthen economic and security ties, ease concerns over deal with Tehran More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Booming London Property a ‘Haven for Dirty Money’i
X
July 29, 2015 9:34 PM
Billions of dollars of so-called ‘dirty money’ from the proceeds of crime - especially from Russia - are being laundered through the London property market, according to anti-corruption activists. As Henry Ridgwell reports from the British capital, the government has pledged to crack down on the practice.
Video

Video Booming London Property a ‘Haven for Dirty Money’

Billions of dollars of so-called ‘dirty money’ from the proceeds of crime - especially from Russia - are being laundered through the London property market, according to anti-corruption activists. As Henry Ridgwell reports from the British capital, the government has pledged to crack down on the practice.
Video

Video Hometown of Boy Scouts of America Founder Reacts to Gay Leader Decision

Ottawa, Illinois, is the hometown of W.D. Boyce, who founded the Boy Scouts of America in 1910. In Ottawa, where Scouting remains an important part of the legacy of the community, the end of the organization's ban on openly gay adult leaders was seen as inevitable. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.
Video

Video 'Metal Muscles' Flex a New Bionic Hand

Artificial limbs, including the most complex of them – the human hand – are getting more life-like and useful due to constant advances in tiny hydraulic, pneumatic and electric motors called actuators. But now, as VOA’s George Putic reports, scientists in Germany say the future of the prosthetic hand may lie not in motors but in wires that can ‘remember’ their shape.
Video

Video Russia Accused of Abusing Interpol to Pursue Opponents

A British pro-democracy group has accused Russia of abusing the global law enforcement agency Interpol by requesting the arrest and extradition of political opponents. A new report by the group notes such requests can mean the accused are unable to travel and are often unable to open bank accounts. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video 'Positive Atmosphere' Points Toward TPP Trade Deal in Hawaii

Talks on a major new trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations are said to be nearing completion in Hawaii. Some trade experts say the "positive atmosphere" at the discussions could mean a deal is within reach, but there is still hard bargaining to be done over many issues and products, including U.S. drugs and Japanese rice. VOA's Jim Randle reports.
Video

Video Genome Initiative Urgently Moves to Freeze DNA Before Species Go Extinct

Earth is in the midst of its sixth mass extinction. The last such event was caused by an asteroid 66 million years ago. It killed off the dinosaurs and practically everything else. So scientists are in a race against time to classify the estimated 11 million species alive today. So far only 2 million are described by science, and researchers are worried many will disappear before they even have a name. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Scientists: One-Dose Malaria Cure is Possible

Scientists have long been trying to develop an effective protection and cure for malaria - one of the deadliest diseases that affects people in tropical areas, especially children. As the World Health Organization announces plans to begin clinical trials of a promising new vaccine, scientists in South Africa report that they too are at an important threshold. George Putic reports, they are testing a compound that could be a single-dose cure for malaria.
Video

Video 'New York' Magazine Features 35 Cosby Accusers

The latest issue of 'New York' magazine features 35 women who say they were drugged and raped by film and television celebrity Bill Cosby. The women are aged from 44 to 80 and come from different walks of life and races. The magazine interviewed each of them separately, but Zlatica Hoke reports their stories are similar.
Video

Video US Calls Fight Against Human Trafficking a Must Win

The United States is promising not to give up its fight against what Secretary of State John Kerry calls the “scourge” of modern slavery. Officials released the country’s annual human trafficking report Monday – a report that’s being met with some criticism. VOA’s National Security correspondent Jeff Seldin has more from the State Department.
Video

Video Washington DC Underground Streetcar Station to Become Arts Venue

Abandoned more than 50 years ago, the underground streetcar station in Washington D.C.’s historic DuPont Circle district is about to be reborn. The plan calls for turning the spacious underground platforms - once meant to be a transportation hub, - into a unique space for art exhibitions, presentations, concerts and even a film set. Roman Mamonov has more from beneath the streets of the U.S. capital. Joy Wagner narrates his report.
Video

Video Europe’s Twin Crises Collide in Greece as Migrant Numbers Soar

Greece has replaced Italy as the main gateway for migrants into Europe, with more than 100,000 arrivals in the first six months of 2015. Many want to move further into Europe and escape Greece’s economic crisis, but they face widespread dangers on the journey overland through the Balkans. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Stink Intensifies as Lebanon’s Trash Crisis Continues

After the closure of a major rubbish dump a week ago, the streets of Beirut are filling up with trash. Having failed to draw up a plan B, politicians are struggling to deal with the problem. John Owens has more for VOA from Beirut.
Video

Video Paris Rolls Out Blueprint to Fight Climate Change

A U.N. climate conference in December aims to produce an ambitious agreement to fight heat-trapping greenhouse gases. But many local governments are not waiting, and have drafted their own climate action plans. That’s the case with Paris — which is getting special attention, since it’s hosting the climate summit. Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at the transformation of the French capital into an eco-city.
Video

Video Racially Diverse Spider-Man Takes Center Stage

Whether it’s in a comic book or on the big screen, fans have always known the man behind the Spider-Man mask as Peter Parker. But that is changing, at least in the comic book world. Marvel Comics announced that a character called Miles Morales will replace Peter Parker as Spider-Man in a new comic book series. He is half Latino, half African American, and he is quite popular among comic book fans. Correspondent Elizabeth Lee reports from Los Angeles.
Video

Video Historic Symbol Is Theme of Vibrant New Show

A new exhibit in Washington is paying tribute to the American flag with a wide and eclectic selection of artwork that uses the historic symbol as its central theme. VOA’s Julie Taboh was at the DC Chamber of Commerce for the show’s opening.

VOA Blogs

More Americas News

Venezuela Troops Occupy Polar Food Distribution Warehouses

Move follows months of accusations by President Nicolas Maduro that Polar, country's largest private employer, working to sabotage the economy
More

Brazil Nuclear Leader's Arrest May Stymie Atomic Ambitions

Othon Luiz Pinheiro da Silva arrested Tuesday for allegedly taking 4.5 million reais in bribes from engineering firms working on long-delayed Angra 3 power plant
More

Chileans Spooked by Crime, Demand Government Action

Hundreds took to streets of affluent Santiago neighborhoods Wednesday to protest what they say is explosion in crime in one of South America's safest nations
More

Bright Colors, Patterns Prevail at Colombiamoda Fashion Shows

Designers and brands show off a plethora of creations on catwalks in Medellin this week
More

Report: Rio's Filthy Waters Far From Ready for Olympics

An AP investigation found extremely high levels of viruses and bacteria from human sewage in Olympic and Paralympic venues for swimming and boating
More

Peru Forces Raid Coca Region Rebel Slave Camp

Special forces rescue 26 children, 13 women, some of whom had been held captive for three decades, when they raided jungle camp of Shining Path rebels
More