Economy

The global economy: strengthening growth and job creation - Statement at G20 Leader's Summit

 

G20 Leaders' Summit

Session 1 – The global economy: strengthening growth and job creation

Remarks by Angel Gurría, Secretary-General, OECD

Brisbane, 15-16 November 2014

 

(As prepared for delivery)

 

Congratulations!

 

The G-20 has made a quantum leap to promote growth and jobs!

 

It changed the mindsets. It got us into a "yes we can" mood, as the classic would say. Through your almost 1000 commitments, mostly all structural reforms, you delivered ambitious, yet achievable, national growth strategies. Joint OECD-IMF assessment concluded that such strategies would yield an additional 2.1% to the collective GDP of the G20 countries by 2018. So, effectively, the G20 is committing to add another Australia plus another New Zealand to the world economy by 2018. It doesn't get better than that!

 

You also committed to close by 2025 the gender gap in labour market participation by 25%. This alone could bring an extra 100 million women into G20 labour markets and yield an additional 1.6% growth by 2025. Women are the most underutilized economic asset in our economies.  

 

This is all the more important in the context of a weak economic outlook. Even as we undertake supply-side reforms, we need to address sluggish demand, fight persistent low inflation, high unemployment and increasing inequalities, by developing more inclusive growth models, using whatever margins of monetary and fiscal reform that may be left.

 

To build on the progress achieved so far, we need:

  • To reignite trade, investment and credit - the engines of growth – which today, are moving at half speed.
  • Full implementation of the commitments, about 1000 measures, to reach the 2% additional growth.
  • To turn structural reform into a permanent process, a state of mind, a way of life. Not a decision on a certain date.
  • To establish, as the Presidency has proposed, a robust G-20 accountability process – which the OECD stands ready to support.

 

The crisis left us a legacy of slow growth, high unemployment, growing inequality and an erosion of the trust of societies in their governments. It is now possible, perhaps for the first time in 6 years, to restore trust.    

 

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