Call for mobilization to defend our alternatives against the G7

6 June by Alternatives G7


France is the host country of the next G7 [1] meeting to be held in Biarritz from 24 to 26 August 2019.

For decades, the G7 has played the role of an economic and financial directorate alongside the IMF IMF
International Monetary Fund
Along with the World Bank, the IMF was founded on the day the Bretton Woods Agreements were signed. Its first mission was to support the new system of standard exchange rates.

When the Bretton Wood fixed rates system came to an end in 1971, the main function of the IMF became that of being both policeman and fireman for global capital: it acts as policeman when it enforces its Structural Adjustment Policies and as fireman when it steps in to help out governments in risk of defaulting on debt repayments.

As for the World Bank, a weighted voting system operates: depending on the amount paid as contribution by each member state. 85% of the votes is required to modify the IMF Charter (which means that the USA with 17,68% % of the votes has a de facto veto on any change).

The institution is dominated by five countries: the United States (16,74%), Japan (6,23%), Germany (5,81%), France (4,29%) and the UK (4,29%).
The other 183 member countries are divided into groups led by one country. The most important one (6,57% of the votes) is led by Belgium. The least important group of countries (1,55% of the votes) is led by Gabon and brings together African countries.

http://imf.org
, the WTO WTO
World Trade Organisation
The WTO, founded on 1st January 1995, replaced the General Agreement on Trade and Tariffs (GATT). The main innovation is that the WTO enjoys the status of an international organization. Its role is to ensure that no member States adopt any kind of protectionism whatsoever, in order to accelerate the liberalization global trading and to facilitate the strategies of the multinationals. It has an international court (the Dispute Settlement Body) which judges any alleged violations of its founding text drawn up in Marrakesh.

and the World Bank World Bank
WB
The World Bank was founded as part of the new international monetary system set up at Bretton Woods in 1944. Its capital is provided by member states’ contributions and loans on the international money markets. It financed public and private projects in Third World and East European countries.

It consists of several closely associated institutions, among which :

1. The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD, 189 members in 2017), which provides loans in productive sectors such as farming or energy ;

2. The International Development Association (IDA, 159 members in 1997), which provides less advanced countries with long-term loans (35-40 years) at very low interest (1%) ;

3. The International Finance Corporation (IFC), which provides both loan and equity finance for business ventures in developing countries.

As Third World Debt gets worse, the World Bank (along with the IMF) tends to adopt a macro-economic perspective. For instance, it enforces adjustment policies that are intended to balance heavily indebted countries’ payments. The World Bank advises those countries that have to undergo the IMF’s therapy on such matters as how to reduce budget deficits, round up savings, enduce foreign investors to settle within their borders, or free prices and exchange rates.

. Today, it is the space where seven of the world’s greatest economic powers and the European Commission come together to perpetuate a system that has led to the growth of inequalities and the destruction of our planet, while allowing the omnipotence and harmful influence of big corporations to continue. Thus, a large proportion of people are denied their rights and every day the promises of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights are violated. The UN’s legitimacy is being questioned from all sides. There is oppression and violence in every corner of the world, while austerity policies lead to a decline in human rights.

While it is shaken by the movement of the yellow vests which denounces – among other things – the growth of inequality, the French government is claiming that tackling inequality will be at the centre of its G7 agenda. But this increase in inequality is due, precisely, to the neo-liberal policies implemented by the richest countries! It seems like the pyromaniacs want to play firemen. If the G7 countries wish to prove us wrong, they will have to really address the structural policies which have been implemented for decades and are at the root of current inequalities.

These G7 summits are organised at great expense ($500 million in 2018) and are but promotional displays. In this context, can the real problems be addressed?

Thus, we the citizens gathered within collectives, movements or organisations, will take the floor to remind us of the urgent need to implement profound and radical changes to our economic and social system, for the rights of each and every one of us, and the dignity of our restored Earth. The fight against inequality, and the urgency of climate and social issues, cannot be met with rhetoric. There’s no time for that. There is an urgent need for rich countries to take responsibility for these challenges.

This G7 will be held in the Basque Country, a land of resistance where there are deeply rooted struggles guided by solidarity and the will to build a fairer and more desirable world. We believe that we can, in the Basque Country as elsewhere, build bright futures Futures A futures contract is a standardized advance commitment, negotiated on an organized futures market, to deliver a specified quantity of a precisely defined underlying asset at a specified time – the ‘delivery date’ – and place. Futures contracts are the most widely traded financial instruments in the world. and put an end to the intolerable growth of poverty and inequality.

Even though the French government plans to substantially limit the freedoms of movement and of demonstration, we will come together to express the diversity of our aspirations, analyses and alternatives for another world.

For us, the world of tomorrow requires the defence and promotion of human rights which should be the first foundation of any policy. Our proposals concern:

  • The end of an economic and financial system based on exploitation and monopolisation.
  • Determined action against climate change and in favour of lifestyles that respect ecosystems and biodiversity.
  • The fight against patriarchy and any system of domination that generates inequality and the denial of rights.
  • The construction of a true democracy for any kind of communal life in which everyone can express their wishes and influence choices.
  • Tax justice: through progressive taxation, through a real fight against tax evasion involving all the States of the world.
  • States at the service of the common good, regulating multinationals to ensure citizens’ rights.
  • The end of any kind of discrimination, a dignified welcome for migrants andfreedom of movement.
  • Solidarity and peace between people.
  • The right to self-determination.
  • Real recognition of cultural and linguistic differences whilst respecting human rights.
  • The defence of the rights of peasants who are the first actors of food sovereignty; effective access to healthy, sustainable and safe and balanced food, which is designed by and for citizens.
  • The existence of high quality public services as close as possible to the people, including in the poorest countries.
  • The prohibition of free trade agreements that jeopardise social rights and the quality of the environment.

Let’s come together, community organisations, unions and citizens in Biarritz, in August 2019, to make our voices and demands heard.

Signing members



Footnotes

[1United States, Japan, Germany, France, United Kingdom, Italy, Canada

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