The global economy is in its worst state in a century. While the COVID-19 pandemic pushed the economy over the cliff, many mishaps had brought it to the edge. The challenging opportunity is to ‘build back better’, with real urgency required from policymakers and business leaders. Accordingly, the B20, representing the global business community, believes in action through collaboration to identify solutions to ensure business continuity and support for society at large.
Over the past year, the B20 has engaged in an inclusive and action-oriented process with more than 650 business leaders across the G20 and beyond through its six taskforces and Women in Business Action Council. The B20’s work has culminated in the formation of 25 policy recommendations to the G20 Leaders imploring bold, collaborative and decisive action to put growth on a resilient and sustainable path that benefits all.
In the B20’s report entitled Realizing Opportunities of the 21st Century for All, the 25 recommendations outline an action plan to reinvigorate the global economy by focusing on several key areas including digitalization, free and fair trade, sustainable finance and infrastructure, mainstreaming women in business, integrity and compliance, climate change and sustainability, and future of work and education. All policy recommendations were developed with cross-cutting themes that drive sustainable and equitable growth: aligning with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs); empowering women across all sectors and ensuring a favorable environment for SMEs and entrepreneurs to thrive.
The policy recommendations address both immediate challenges and medium- to long-term developmental goals and are grouped in the following themes that align with the agenda of the 2020 G20 Presidency:
- Empowering people by doubling down efforts to empower women and youth, building workforce resilient to technological, health and economic risks, scaling up financing for sustainable development, pursuing economic diversification including job-creating sectors such as sustainable tourism, and making substantial progress on trade cooperation including institutional reforms.
- Safeguarding the planet by accelerating action to achieve net zero carbon, promoting cleaner and more sustainable energy systems, strengthening climate resilience of infrastructure, promoting the transition to circular economy, and promoting the sustainable use of freshwater systems and the ocean.
- Shaping new frontiers by enabling even adoption of technological advances and enhancing a culture of integrity. The B20 recommends enhancing the environment for fintech, supporting resilient digital infrastructure by growing requisite skills, advancing smart cities, and leveraging technologies to manage risks related to corruption and fraud.
The B20 policy recommendations will be formally presented to the G20 during the B20 virtual Summit on October 26-27th, 2020 where global leaders from business, academia, civil society, and international organizations will discuss the world’s most pressing issues such as post-pandemic recovery and transitioning towards a cleaner, resilient and more digitally enabled future.
The B20 urgently calls on the G20 Leaders to adopt these policy recommendations in order to prevent the pandemic from causing further damage, while setting the foundation for a more equitable world.