This year’s G20 talkfest has come to an end with the usual communique of fine words.
Apart from the discussion of climate change there’s little in the communique that wouldn’t have furrowed the brows of Margaret Thatcher or Ronald Regan thirty years ago with most of the pronouncement a being around opening markets, reducing unemployment and freeing capital.
On the latter point, the call to reduce tax avoidance given this was an obvious consequence of the 1980s reforms would be met by with a rueful laugh from those responsible for the deregulation wave of the Reagan and Thatcher years given reducing taxes on corporations was one of the reasons for the ‘reforms’
An aspect that would trouble Maggie’s and Ronnie’s ghosts would be the commitment to ‘address deflationary pressures’, something undreamt of in the 1980s, although a clear warning to today’s commentators and investors that Quantitative Easing is not going away any time soon.
What today’s communique shows is the world’s leaders are still very wedded to the economic models of the Twentieth Century despite the massive demographic and technological developments changing our society.
The real message from the G20 is don’t wait for your country’s leaders if you want progress; at best they probably won’t comprehend what you’re saying.
Although if you can put your ideas in terms of creating growth or reducing youth unemployment then you might have a willing audience with your local minister, chancellor or President.