World leaders descended on Toronto Thursday for three days of summits among the Group of Eight (G8) leading industrialised nations and the Group of 20 (G20) top world economies.
The G8 summit Friday and Saturday is expected to focus on development and security. The G20 summit, Saturday evening and Sunday, will deal with economic and financial reform.
“The European Union's message for the two summits here in Canada is clear: we must not allow the resolve for global, coordinated action to weaken,” the president of the EU's executive, Jose Manuel Barroso, told journalists in Toronto.
G8 members have pledged to boost their aid to poor states massively by 2015 as part of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), but are billions of dollars short of their targets.
On Saturday, the G8 leaders are to be joined by their counterparts from Argentina, Australia, Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, Mexico, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain and Turkey.
Their discussions, in Toronto, are set to focus on the effects of the global financial crisis and their efforts to overcome it.
Ahead of the talks, divisions emerged among European states, which have begun slashing their crisis spending, and the US, which is urging G20 members not to cut back too soon.
Canada’s Prime Minister Stephen Harper, who is chairing both events, has labelled the summit an “accountability” meeting.
The G20 summit is also expected to debate calls for a worldwide levy on banks and a tax on financial transactions, and to discuss policy on global warming.
PM to pitch for balanced growth
New Delhi: India will pitch for “durable, balanced and sustainable” global growth, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said Friday ahead of his departure for Toronto.
“The summit is expected to deliberate on a framework for strong, sustainable and balanced growth,” Singh said in a statement. “India will project our expectations from the global system, and the kind of global growth processes that we seek.”