News / Americas

World Leaders Gather in Mexico for G20 Summit

Los Cabos, Mexico. (VOA/Greg Flakus)
Los Cabos, Mexico. (VOA/Greg Flakus)
Greg Flakus
LOS CABOS, Mexico - The leaders of 19 nations and the European Union, known as the Group of 20, are gathering at the Mexican beach resort Los Cabos for a two-day summit, to be held Monday and Tuesday, with worries about economic crises in several European countries overshadowing most other issues.  Officials from G20 working groups say the drive to help needy countries remains a major focus of the summit.

Mariachi musicians greeted delegations from around the world as they arrived at one of Mexico's most luxurious beach resort areas. But, although much of their work in the next two days will take place in hotels and conference halls within view of the beaches, the leaders attending this summit will be spending much of their time talking about the debt problems facing Greece, Spain and Italy.

The G20 host, Mexican President Felipe Calderon, says participants in the summit should firm up their pledges to the International Monetary Fund of more money to deal with the debt crisis. G20 nations promised to provide more than $400 billion in new loans in April, but several have yet to follow up on that pledge.

Representatives from some non-governmental organizations are worried that the G20 focus on the problems of relatively rich nations in Europe might detract from efforts to help poor, non-industrialized countries where most of the world's neediest people ​reside.
World Leaders Gather in Mexico for G-20i
|| 0:00:00
X
Greg Flakus
June 18, 2012 5:30 PM
The leaders of 19 nations and the European Union - known as the Group of 20 - are gathering at the Mexican beach resort for a two-day summit to be held Monday and Tuesday. Worries about economic crises in some European countries overshadow most other issues. But, as VOA's Greg Flakus reports, officials from G-20 working groups say the need to help more needy countries remains a major focus of the summit.

"The last two summits have been dominated by the Eurozone crisis, by Greece, and that means that there is very little agenda time for other issues," said Christina Weller, lead economic analyst for London-based Catholic Agency for Overseas Development.

Weller argues that G20 leaders would be helping their own countries by doing more to help the millions of people in developing nations who cannot participate in the global economy. She says poverty is more than a moral blight.

"It is also an economic problem. It lowers demand. That is where the growth should be is in those markets and if you tackle poverty, everybody benefits," said Weller.

But, although the world leaders who meet here for two days may have little time to discuss much beyond the debt crisis in Europe, officials from those nations continue to advance their work on previously approved agendas such as economic development and poverty reduction.

The director of Mexico's Agency for International Development, Rogelio Granguillhome, who co-chairs the G20 Development Working Group, told reporters that this effort has advanced steadily, in the past few years.

He says this group, which met here in Los Cabos in May, is presenting leaders with concrete and precise recommendations on such issues as infrastructure development, food security and green growth. This group also worked in concert with representatives of the business sector, who are holding a concurrent meeting, called the B20, at a nearby beach hotel.

The director of policy and business practices for the International Chamber of Commerce, Stefano Bertasi, says corporate leaders from around the world take part in these forums in an effort to be partners with governments in promoting economic development.

"We want this to be an enduring, ongoing process of collaboration and discussion that takes place before summits, during summits and after summits," he said.

Bertasi says that, although there are areas of concern for businesses, like  the rise of protectionism and higher taxes, there are many areas of mutual interest such as the promotion of green energy.  He says the way business leaders often work out differences on various issues can serve as a model for government leaders as they struggle to find agreement.

"If we bring consensus views and ideas, brought by business to government, hopefully, that will help governments themselves come to consensus on some of these issues," said Bertasi.

Groups that might want to express disagreement with any of the actions taken at either the G20 or the B20 meetings are quite restricted in what they can do and where they can stage a protest. The meetings are being held under tight security in an area along the tip of the Baja peninsula where all access roads are patrolled by heavily armed Mexican federal police and soldiers. Helicopters swoop overhead on a regular basis and Mexican Coast Guard and Navy ships are anchored just offshore, in plain sight of the summit participants and the thousands of tourists staying at beachfront hotels.

You May Like

University of Michigan Wins Solar Car Race

Squad guided its student-designed solar-powered vehicle to fifth consecutive time victory in eight-day bi-annual American Solar Challenge More

Nigerian Islamic School Tries to Combat Boko Haram

Kaduna school headmaster teaches his students that what militants are doing is are doing is 'a total misunderstanding of the Islamic religion' More

University Trains Students to Advocate for Deaf People Worldwide

Program prepares graduates to advocate internationally for access to education, jobs for people with disabilities More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Jim Beam from: Las Vegas
June 18, 2012 9:38 AM
You have to wonder if Obama and Eric Holder will use the G-20 Summit to run some more guns to the Mexican Drug Cartels! It is just not fair most junkies have to pay for their marijuana and cocaine habits! Obama provides them with free American guns to pay for his!


by: TheWhisperer1 from: Queensland
June 18, 2012 9:38 AM
Obama, British PM and French Prime Minister are not there. Therefore G20 - 3 = 17
Gillard's blunder on ABC TV Interview "Let us not remember..." instead of "Let us not forget..."
Is Gillard really up to this kind of pressure?
I would advise other countries to look very carefully at Gillard's figures for Australia. Some figures are probably contrived rather than a true reflection of the Australian economy. Look at what Costello found when he audited Queensland's state of accounts.


by: Stryke from: Las Vegas
June 18, 2012 8:49 AM
Wow. Los Cabos. Funny how the politicians always pick luxurious venues for their big pow-wows, all at their taxpayers' expense and to the extreme inconvenience of visiting tourists. Oh well, at least the Secret Service will have a good time.


by: Vickie from: Chattanooga, TN
June 18, 2012 8:32 AM
Mexico should spend lavishly since the US has spared them the expense of caring for their welfare class. Mexico must be the first country in history to profit from its welfare class. That is their major export.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spati
X
Reasey Poch
July 28, 2014 7:18 PM
China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spat

China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video ESA Spacecraft to Land on a Comet

After a long flight through deep space, a European Space Agency probe is finally approaching its target -- a comet millions of kilometers away from earth. Scientists say the mission may lead to some startling discoveries about the origins of the water on earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Young Africans Arrive in US for Leadership Program

President Barack Obama's Young African Leadership Initiative has brought hundreds of young Africans to the United States for a six-week program aimed at building their knowledge and skills in fields such as public administration and business. Out of the 50,000 young Africans who applied for the program, just one percent was accepted. VOA's Laurel Bowman caught up with some of those who made the cut and has this report.
Video

Video In Honduras, Amnesty Rumors Fuel US Migration Surges

False rumors in Central America are fueling the current surge of undocumented young people being apprehended at the U.S. border. The inaccurate claims suggest the U.S. will give amnesty to young migrants from the region. As VOA's Brian Padden reports from Honduras, these rumors trace back to President Obama's 2012 executive order to halt deportations for some young undocumented immigrants already living in the United States.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid

More Americas News

Urbanization Can Bring Health Risks

Researchers warn of increase in heart disease, diabetes
More

US Restricts Travel by Venezuelan Government Officials

Restriction to apply to officials the State Department links to human rights abuses in government crackdown on protest and dissent
More

US Sanctions Venezuelan Officials for Rights Violations

State Department official would not publicly identify individuals because of visa record confidentiality
More

Time Almost Up for Argentina, US Bondholders in Debt Talks

South American nation has until end of Wednesday to either pay in full 'holdout' hedge funds, cut a deal or win a stay on court order that triggeered deadline
More

Football Star's Stepfather Kidnapped, Released

Lawyer for family of Argentina's Carlos Tevez said player's stepfather appeared to be unharmed
More

Video Young Migrants From Central America Risk Life and Limb to Get to US

For tens of thousands of young people trip north is fraught with hardship and danger
More