I’m sitting in a vast airport hangar style media lounge on a long table marked with “Reserved for G20 Voice”. This is the first summit where bloggers form an integral part of the event. They will distribute their own news, analysis and ideas to their own networks. To be honest, no-one knows whether it will work. Will they start their own global conversation and just add to the acres of copy already written about this event.
There’s only one problem. I can’t see any fellow bloggers. In fact, there must be 1000 seats and network feeds in this room and so far only 50 seats are occupied.
Whilst the media centre is lazily cranking into gear, next door in the summit rooms things are already at full speed. There’s a crackle of anticiation in the air. The PM’s office were here at 6.15am. They are the glue that will hold things together today and whatever the outcome, they’ll deservce a long weekend of recuperation – though of course, with our PM, that is not an easy outcome to achieve!
I was struck by a comment the PM made earlier in the week about it taking 16 years from the Wall Street Crash before the world came together at Bretton Woods to reshape the global financial system. As a historian, he’s determined not to allow us to repeat the mistakes of the past.
World leaders have to clean up the global financial system with tighter and more transparent regulation based on common principles. They need to reform and resource international financial institutions like the IMF and World Bank. They need to hold their nerve and reject protectionism. And for me, they must not allow the global recession to weaken existing commitments to the world’s poor. This goes for climate change targets too.
And they haven’t got 16 years. They’ve got until late afternoon today. I wish them all success today.