L’AQUILA, July 10 Reuters) - The Group of Eight rich nations and the G5 of emerging economies were among 40 nations and organisations represented at a three-day summit to discuss recession, climate change, trade and food security.
Below is a comparison between aims going in to the meeting and the results achieved.
The only area where world leaders delivered more than expected. They pledging $20 billion over three years to spur agricultural investment in poorer countries to fight hunger. Up to the last moment, expectations had been for $15 billion.
U.S. President Barack Obama pushed for a shift towards farm investment aid from emergency food aid. Washington will make $3.5 billion available. [ID:nL9671639]
Leaders wanted to narrow differences over cuts in greenhouse gas emissions and funding for low carbon technology in preparation for a meeting in December to agree a new U.N. climate change pact to replace the Kyoto agreement.
But G8 leaders failed to persuade India and China to join a push to cut greenhouse emissions by 50 percent by 2050.
And a G8 deal to reduce its greenhouse gas emission by 80 percent by 2050 was thrown into doubt within hours of being announced. Canada said the goal was ‘aspirational’ and Russia said it could not meet the target.
United Nation Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said progress on climate change at the G8 was “not enough”. [ID:nFCA000189]
This was another area where progress was expected.
The G8, G5, South Korea, Egypt, Australia agreed to complete the long-stalled Doha trade talks in 2010 and set a ministerial meeting before a September G20 summit in the United States. Diplomats said the fact that leaders had given themselves a clear timeline may make the difference on clinching a package whose rough outlines were already set. [ID:nFCA000191]
G8 nations were under pressure to ensure they are meeting commitments to boost aid to the developing world, and members discussed the set up of a taskforce to monitor the possibility of a food security fund.
A final draft communique promised $15 billion over three years with the US and Japan contribution making up around $3 bilion each. [ID:nRON004721]
Japan and the European Union are championing a code of conduct on foreign agricultural investments in poorer countries. [ID:nL968700]
Anyone looking for a clear sense of how G8 nations would unwind stimulus spending would be left puzzled. The leaders of the eight industrialised powers were cautious and said they had to ensure that stimulus worked before tackling the task for making their public finances sustainable in the medium term.
“The situation remains uncertain and significant risks remain to economic and financial stability”, the statement issued at the end of the first day on Wednesday said.
With global recovery not yet guaranteed, governments will worry about the bill for heavy stimulus spending once it has succeded [ID:nL8725739]
French and British talk of the need to regulate energy markets to reduce volatility remained only talk. Russia and Canada both said it would be impossible to administer markets in such a way. [IDn:nL882030]
Tiziana Barghini and Janet McBride; Rome newsroom