July 16, 2008
Now that Hokkaido island has returns to normality, we should read the lengthy communiqués very carefully, as the Japanese bill for the summit is apparently €381m.
Africa: The leaders re-committed themselves to the promises made three years ago at Gleneagles.
Whether or not the agreed emission targets are sufficient, what is the mechanism to ensure that they are achieved?
Climate change was discussed without Brazil, China and India; energy security without China, India and any major energy exporter, apart from Russia; North Korea without China; Israel-Palestine without Egypt or Saudi Arabia; Zimbabwe without an African state; and so on.
Brazil, China and India were invited to a meeting of the ‘G8+5’, and another on climate change in general and emission curbs in particular. But the G8 (which includes Russia) talks to China and
India as if it still runs the world. Long communiqués are negotiated for months before each summit, produced by relatively junior civil servants, and issued with the appropriate fanfare.
It is painfully clear that the G8 formula no longer makes sense and indeed may be counter-productive.
I’ll return later to what might replace the G8.Author : Stanley Crossick