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Statement by Francis Wurtz, President of GUE/NGL, on the conclusions of the G20 summit in London


28 Apr 2009

The evaluation of the results of the G20 that we have just heard - "success story"; "turning point in the crisis"; "huge success for the European Union" raises, in my opinion, two questions: the first involves the analysis of the current world financial system to which Europe, we have seen, is closely connected.

Let us be clear: the desire of the G20 leaders to send a reassuring message at all costs to the markets, even to people, has resulted in greatly minimising the state of play! In reality, forecasts of the supposed - but as yet well-hidden - losses incurred by the banks are exploding from one month to the next. The worst, in this respect, is not behind but in front of us. We were talking about a loss of about 2000 billion dollars three months ago - which was already astronomical. Now, the IMF puts the figure at 4000 billion dollars. For its part, the Commission has estimated the funds mobilised on various grounds by the Member States to bail out the banks at 3000 billion euros, in other words a quarter of their GDP! This is the price to pay for the frantic race towards money for profit and profit for money.

This grim reality highlights the importance of my second question: what is the effective substance of the progress made at the G20 in London in terms of regulation? When Joseph Stiglitz, charged by the United Nations to head an independent committee of experts on the financial crisis, was asked: "do you agree with the economist Simon Johnson when he says that the regulatory aspect (of the G20) is close to zero," the Nobel prize-winning economist said: "I agree"!

The ink had not even dried on the London Declaration when the G20's main partner, the United States, called on the speculative funds, which are comfortably installed in tax havens, to buy back as cheaply as possible the toxic assets which are blocking the balance sheets of American banks? We are bathing in "raising the moral standards of capitalism"!

In actual fact, the G20 did not put a stop to neoliberal globalisation in any way. It ignored the key question of the reorganisation of the international monetary system. It promoted the IMF without considering its transformation. It passed in silence over the immense social challenge engendered by this crisis. It prescribed homeopathic remedies where serious surgery is obviously needed. Europe, I think, has to go way beyond the G20. The house is on fire. Can you not hear the cries of anger rising in our societies? They are not calling for soothing words, but strong and concrete acts. Now!


GianfrancoBattistini +32 475 64 66 28

Gay Kavanagh +32473 842320


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