One of the most significant developments in global economic leadership in recent years has been the development of the G20 Leaders’ Summit.
After a positive start, particularly with the 2009 London G20 Leaders’ Summit, the G20 has more recently been criticized as losing focus and making little headway in dealing with major global economic issues. Hence, this is an opportune time to ‘take stock’ and assess the performance of the G20 — to identify what has worked and what has not.
This is important if the G20 is to be strengthened such that it can live up to its self-appointed role as ‘the premier forum for international cooperation.’
This was the objective of the ‘Regional Think 20 Seminar’ jointly hosted by the G20 Studies Centre at the Lowy Institute, the Asia Development Bank Institute (ADBI) and the Korea Development Institute (KDI), from May 22-24 at the Lowy Institute in Sydney.
This regional seminar was an extension of the ‘Think 20’ initiative that was launched by Mexico in 2012, where a number of think tanks from G20 countries convened in order to provide input and analysis to the G20 Chair on the G20’s agenda. Russia repeated the Think 20 exercise and Australia will do the same when it chairs the G20 in 2014.
However, economic developments in Asia have not featured prominently in the G20. Emphasizing a regional perspective is therefore important because much of the discussion and policy initiatives coming from the G20 have been influenced by economic developments in Europe and the US. The objective of the regional Think 20 seminar was to commence a process that will help correct this situation.
The papers presented and discussed at the seminar will serve as important inputs to Australia’s preparation for chairing the G20 in 2014.