G20

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Farm workers tend to a tobacco crop in Zimbabwe in 2014. The push to establish a business and human rights treaty is fraught with problems. Reuter/Philimon Bulawayo

Why we need to tread carefully in drawing up human rights rules for business

Traditionally human rights are viewed as being indivisible, interdependent and interrelated. The notion that a company may need to choose which human rights it will protect is antithetical.
One of four koalas on loan to Singapore Zoo, where they were unveiled to the public on Wednesday May 20. Qantas Airways

Koalas, platypuses and pandas and the power of soft diplomacy

Four female koalas have just made their debut in front of an adoring public at Singapore Zoo – the latest in a long line of animals used for diplomatic purposes, going back to Winston the platypus.
To help Australia meet its G20 commitments, infrastructure projects like Sydney’s WestConnex require a more stringent and transparent cost-benefit analysis. Dan Himbrechts/AAP

PM’s infrastructure plan failing growth and cost-benefit goals

The OECD’s Going for Growth report released this week is a good reminder of why Tony Abbott wants to be remembered as “the infrastructure Prime Minister”. The OECD argues addressing infrastructure service…
Like Bill Murray’s character in Groundhog Day, Australia must change its way of thinking – or else we face the grim fate of being trapped in an economic rut. Columbia Pictures

Prosperity or decline? Liberating ideas can reboot our economy

The World Economic Forum’s annual meeting wraps up off the piste in the Swiss ski resort this weekend. Two themes are growth and stability; and innovation and industry. Attendees must feel like Bill Murray…
Amidst the hugging of cuddly animals, G20 leaders talked growth. Andrew Taylor/G20 Australia/AAP

2014, the year that was: Business + Economy

In April, Treasurer Joe Hockey set the tone for his economics policies in a speech in New York on what he referred to as ending the “entitlement culture”. Hockey, who had given a defining speech in 2012…
John Howard made sure he was facing the same way as other world leaders on climate policy, unlike the current Prime Minister. AAP Image/David Crosling

How John Howard could help turn Tony Abbott around on climate

Throughout his prime-ministership, which ran from 1996 to 2007, John Howard’s perspective on climate change was informed by geopolitics more than science. The Kyoto Protocol, the key international climate…
Many countries still need to clean up their act on anti-corruption and whistleblowing protections. Shutterstock

Anti-corruption bar set higher, but Australia still has more to do

Despite the adoption of a third two-year G20 Anti-Corruption Action Plan, corruption received only a few lines in the latest G20 leaders’ communique. The credibility of the G20 as a whole now rests on…
AAP/Lukas Coch

The G20: thanks for noticing

There’s nothing quite like being the centre of attention, even if it costs A$400 million to do so. Now that the curtain has come down on Australia’s moment in the diplomatic spotlight, taxpayers might…
Many G20 members have now pledged contributions to the Green Climate Fund, but Australia has signalled it will not. PR handout/AAP

UN Green Climate Fund: it’s time for Australia to step up

The G20 summit in Brisbane has put the pressure on Australia to boost its action on climate change not just at home but also internationally through a new UN-backed fund. The summit yielded major pledges…
G20 leaders agreed to an economic growth target of 2.1% by 2018. AAP Image/Lukas Coch

Climate not included: the G20 growth target will accelerate crisis

Despite Australia’s best efforts, climate change muscled its way onto the G20 agenda. The summit’s final communique included one paragraph restating the importance of international negotiations in Paris…
OECD Centre for Tax Policy and Administration Director Pascal Saint-Amans has been leading the charge against tax avoidance. Dominika Lis/G20 Australia

G20 tax reform plan should prevent another Lux leaks

The G20 Communique is good news on the international tax reform front. As part of the G20 commitment to boost economic resilience the Communique commits G20 nations to taking action to ensure fairness…
United on the need for stronger economic growth. Lukas Coch/AAP

G20 leaders agree US$2 trillion growth goal: experts react

The G20 leaders have reaffirmed a commitment to raise global growth, saying if more than 800 agreed measures are “fully implemented”, GDP will grow by an additional 2.1% by 2018, adding more than US$2…
The risks facing the planet call for a new approach to economics. Red Cross/AAP

G20 climate challenge calls for a rethink of economics

Focusing on growth, the Brisbane G20 leaders' summit has not grappled with three key issues. How much more growth can the planet survive? How can poorer nations raise their living standards to parity with…
Rebalancing towards Asia…with values. Dan Peled/AAP

‘And speaking of China…’ Obama’s hope for Asia

US President Barack Obama took to the stage at the University of Queensland in Brisbane on a day which had the soles of your shoes melting. We had been through a complicated but reasonable security process…
Economic growth is a significant contributor to the climate change crisis. www.shutterstock.com

To get climate change under control, our growth fetish must go

The recent US-China climate announcement is a significant development in humanity’s equivocal response to the climate crisis. Despite over four decades of political engagement with climate change, tangible…
Latin American countries, including Argentina, represent a significant trade opportunity for Australia. Alex Proimos/Flickr

Latin America the overlooked trade giant of Australia’s G20

While much of Australia’s media has been covering Abbott’s macho stance on Russian President Vladimir Putin, the G20 meetings will be focusing on how best to improve global trade, which severely declined…

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