President Mauricio Macri formally assumed the 2018 presidency of the G20 on Thursday, sketching out the main lines of his approach in terms very similar to his political philosophy at a local level.
Just as he always urges “dialogue” in domestic politics, so Macri said that he sees his new challenge as turning the G20 into a “global conversation” primarily attuned to the needs of the people so that “growth reaches everybody.”
Speaking at the Kirchner Cultural Centre (CCK), Macri said that his slogan for the global heavyweight grouping would be “Building Consensus for Fair and Sustainable Development” and that Argentina would seek to represent the region as a whole as the first South American country to head the G20. Teamwork would be the key to success, he added. Argentina would seek to extend to the G20 its great national objective of reducing poverty, shooting for inclusive growth, he continued. Macri described Argentine diplomacy as “based on the power of the norm, not the norm of power.”
He pointed out that the G20 had proved its worth in the 2008 crisis when it headed off an international depression but he described today’s challenges as different, a scenario of “growth not benefitting everybody …thus undermining the confidence of many in globalisation”. “Education must be at the centre of the debate,” he underlined.
Macri began his speech by thanking all the countries who had helped in the search for the missing submarine ARA San Juan, some of whom are G20 members.