Media Contact:Laura Blank
CANNES, France, 4 November 2011 — As the 2011 G20 Cannes Summit draws to a close, World Vision assessed the G20’s performance on food security, the Eurozone crisis, and the missed opportunities of the Summit. The aid agency is disappointed to see the G20 leaders focus solely on the Eurozone crisis and the Greek referendum, despite previous promises to keep development on the agenda.
"The poor don't care about the Greek tragedy — they have their own tragedy to deal with,” said Adam Taylor, World Vision’s vice president of Advocacy. “Children are dying of hunger in their neighborhoods every day. G20 actions on food security need to be based on the needs and perspectives of those 925 million hungry people around the world."
Measured by media attention and political prioritization, the issues that most impact millions of children in the developing world have been largely overshadowed in Cannes. Even the high-profile presentation by Bill Gates on innovative financing for development barely broke through the preoccupation with the Eurozone crisis and proposed Greek referendum on austerity measures.
This does not negate the fact that some progress was made by the G20 in the months leading up to the summit on addressing commodity price volatility and promoting agriculture. And World Vision affirms the fact that the final communiqué stresses that developed countries should meet their aid commitments. However, there was an expectation that the strong French emphasis on food security as a priority issue for this G20 would lead to bold leadership and clear action plans. This was not the case.
"The G20 had a unique opportunity this week because some of these leaders are facing the huge challenge of fighting hunger and poverty in their own countries,” said Mauricio Cunha, World Vision’s operation director in Brazil. “Unfortunately, this G20 will be remembered as a missed opportunity. The French G20 slogan, "New world, new ideas," rings hollow in light of how little has actually been accomplished. I hope that the next G20 summit in Mexico will write a truly new story, with new ideas.”
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About World Vision:
World Vision is a Christian humanitarian organization dedicated to working with children, families and their communities worldwide to reach their full potential by tackling the causes of poverty and injustice. World Vision serves all people, regardless of religion, race, ethnicity or gender. Visit www.worldvision.org/press.