G20 must include the world's poor in growth agenda, urges NGO alliance

Sep 06, 2013, 13:37 ET from InterAction

ST. PETERSBURG, Russia, Sept. 6, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- As the G20 seeks to build a stronger and more stable global economy, leaders must include the world's poor in their plan, NGO alliance InterAction urged at the close of the 2013 G20 summit.

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G20 leaders met Sept. 5-6 in St. Petersburg, Russia, where they discussed a range of core issues from the war in Syria to improving jobs and growth.

"InterAction welcomes the G20's increasing recognition this year that economic growth needs to be inclusive," said Samuel A. Worthington, president and CEO of InterAction. "To reach this goal, plans must tackle the underlying causes of poverty and not rely on trickle-down economics. Improving nutrition for mothers and children, providing access to financial services for the rural poor, and reducing bank charges for immigrants sending remittances home to their families are all ways to speed growth and ensure the most vulnerable do not fall further behind."

For every dollar invested in nutrition, as much as $138 is generated in improved health and increased productivity, according to a panel of leading economists.

The G20 this year took several meaningful steps in ensuring their policies tackle poverty. The inclusion of small farms and family farmers, especially women farmers, in the plan to improve food production is a positive step. The promotion of decent jobs and comprehensive rural development are important elements in creating more equitable growth. The G20 pledge to establish food reserves and ensure access to humanitarian food supplies can help ameliorate humanitarian emergencies.

The G20's new development plan to strengthen its dialogue with civil society and academia will allow InterAction and others to build off these gains. The comprehensive accountability report – promised every three years – is an opportunity for the G20 to hold itself accountable to the people whose lives it seeks to improve through growth.

"We look forward to taking advantage of the accountability report to follow the progress on the G20 commitments and make sure promises are honored," said Worthington.

InterAction is the largest alliance of U.S.-based nongovernmental international organizations, with more than 180 members. Our members operate in every developing country, working with local communities to overcome poverty and suffering by helping to improve their quality of life. Visit www.interaction.org.

SOURCE InterAction