Gordon Brown has done a superb job of bringing the G20 countries to an agreement. But the deal reached in London today included one big disappointment. The moves on IMF funding, tax havens, trade, toxic assets and financial regulation are real progress, but European conservatives, led by Sarkozy and Merkel, blocked what the world most urgently needs - a new stimulus to create jobs.
The world needs a new stimulus, not later, not in the future, but now. It is fine to agree that more will be done later if the IMF recommends it, but the IMF has already recommended a 2% of GDP investment in jobs and growth and Europe has not made that investment. So what I want to know is when the European Commission will come up with a new and updated recovery plan that meets the recommendations of the IMF?
We have to keep up the pressure on European conservative Presidents and Chancellors who refuse to invest what’s needed to create new jobs. They say Europe has done enough. I say Europe has a lot more to do to get the unemployed back to work.
Nevertheless, the commitments made in London are very good news - if they are implemented. There is still a long way to go.