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The G20 summit shows a world divided in its attitudes toward globalisation

Jennifer Johns writes in The Conversation (7.7.17) that differences in attitudes toward globalisation make cooperation between the world's leading economies extremely difficult, as evidenced at the weekend's G20 summit in Hamburg.

'The theme of this year’s G20 summit in Hamburg, Germany, is “Shaping an Interconnected World”. The gathering of 20 world leaders is set to focus on building resilient economies, improving sustainability and assuming responsibility for the prosperity of all countries. But discussions take place in a much more uncertain and potentially divisive environment than previous years.

'In particular, they are divided over their attitudes toward globalisation. It is globalisation that has significantly increased the degree of interconnection between the world’s economies. And it is this interconnection that drives the need for international discussion and cooperation – via events such as the G20.

'But this last year has seen as a loud backlash against globalisation. There was the Brexit vote in the UK and the election of Donald Trump in the US on a protectionist ticket. This is ironic given that they are two of the world’s biggest economies (at least for the time being). Both have been major drivers of globalisation and have benefited enormously from it.

'But now both countries are calling the future of globalisation into question. Two sides have emerged in the debate over whether or not globalisation is a good thing and whether or not nation states should be more protective and inward-looking.'

G20: Does Donald Trump's awkward performance indicate America's decline as world power?

In a report which has since made headlines around the world, the ABC's Chris Uhlmann critiques the performance and seemingly policy-free agenda at the G20 summit of US President, Donald Trump.

'The G20 became the G19 as it ended. On the Paris climate accords the United States was left isolated and friendless. It is, apparently, where this US President wants to be as he seeks to turn his nation inward.

'Donald Trump has a particular, and limited, skill-set. He has correctly identified an illness at the heart of the Western democracy. But he has no cure for it and seems to just want to exploit it.

'He is a character drawn from America's wild west, a travelling medicine showman selling moonshine remedies that will kill the patient. And this week he underlined he has neither the desire nor the capacity to lead the world.'

 

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