The G-20 meeting

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By ELIAS JABBOUR*

The world needs a new world economic order. In other words, a "new Bretton Woods"

On the next 15th and 16th of November, on the island of Bali – Indonesia, the so-called G-20 meeting will take place, with the theme “Recover together, recover stronger”. This is a group formed by finance ministers and heads of central banks of the 19 largest economies in the world plus the European Union. Its objective, in theory, is to seek solutions to the turmoil in the international economy and its stabilization. Its foundation in 1999 occurred precisely as a response to the successive financial crises that hit the world in the 1990s, and continue to do so.

The great truth is that since its founding, the G-20 has never been able to fulfill the role assigned to itself. The reasons are manifold, including its inability to coordinate an international effort against financial speculation or to resume the original agenda of the Treaty of Bretton Woods (1944) who sought international economic stabilization mechanisms as a way to prevent the world from entering another war again, such as World War II.

This system worked very well until, unilaterally, the United States withdrew from the treaty in 1971, when the country abandoned the gold backing and the value of the currencies began to fluctuate according to different exchange rates. This is the root of the instability that has reigned in the international economy ever since. The G-20 would be a solution to the international economic stalemate experienced since the United States' withdrawal from Bretton Woods.

But there is an inconvenient truth for opinion makers in the so-called “West”. One of the pillars of US power in the world resides precisely in this international financial and economic order marked by recurrent crises and growing instability. More than that, the “empire of lies” is also the “empire of chaos”. Only this conclusion can give us a satisfactory answer about the reasons why the world has not been able to get out of the spiral of financial crises since the 1990s – without the G-20 demonstrating a real capacity for intervention.

The world needs a new world economic order. In other words, a "new Bretton Woods”. Hence the increasing indispensability of the People's Republic of China and the numerous initiatives launched by this country in the sense of building an alternative globalization to neoliberal and financial globalization. This “alternative globalization” is present in the main idea that governs Chinese foreign policy around the construction of a so-called “community with a shared future”. This means that many of the national problems that affect dozens of countries cannot find solutions within purely national frameworks. Certain solutions become global.

The example of the “Belt and Road” initiative is emblematic. It is the largest initiative to export public goods around the world offered by a country in human history. There are thousands of infrastructure works of all kinds in about 140 countries. Unlike the globalization imposed on the world by US imperialism in the 1990s, characterized by neocolonial and aggressive behavior, the “alternative globalization” offered by China does not seek the commercial and financial opening of poor countries. It is a matter of globalization including through large undertakings that generate jobs, income and national dignity for the countries involved.

The “West” offers sanctions and wars, China delivers infrastructure works, hospitals, schools and social stability. The “Belt and Road” initiative, seen as an institution that seeks to consolidate an alternative globalization, is a decisive step and a practical demonstration of the broad possibilities that a “new Bretton Woods” will be able to offer the world. But everything is related. The economy, politics and international security form a whole. Hence the “Belt and Road” initiative forms part of something broader under the banner of the “Global Development Initiative”.

This initiative was launched by Xi Jinping during his presentation at the 76th session of the General Assembly of the United Nations (UN). “We need to promote more equal and balanced global development partnerships, create greater synergy between multilateral development cooperation processes, and accelerate the implementation of the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development,” said Xi Jinping.

There is a seed planted by China for world peace and stability. As Chinese influence in the world grows, so do hopes for a world where chaos, oppression, poverty and inequality become part of the past. Perhaps the greatest legacy of Chinese economic development to humanity is this understanding that the center of everything is people. Humanity will win!

*Elias jabbour is a professor at the Faculty of Economic Sciences at the State University of Rio de Janeiro (UERJ). He is the author, among other books, together with Alberto Gabriele, of China: Socialism in the XNUMXst Century (Boitempo).

Originally published on GGN newspaper.

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