Jobs and Growth Top Priorities for Russian Presidency of G20

Brussels, 11 December 2012 (ITUC Online): International unions welcomed the announcement of the incoming Russian Presidency to give priority to jobs and growth in the G20 discussions in 2013 and to hold the first ever joint meeting of G20 Labour and Finance Ministers to discuss employment in July.

Launching the L20 priorities for 2013 Sharan Burrow, General Secretary of the International Trade Union Confederation, warned that unless there is coordinated action from G20 leaders in 2013 to move from austerity to job creation, words will not be reflected in the investment necessary to get people back to work.

Global unemployment is over 200 million with 75 million young people unemployed. The OECD and ILO estimate 21 million jobs needed to be created each year to return to pre-crisis employment rates by 2015. Against the background of falling output in Europe and stalling growth worldwide, this will not happen.

“The Russian Presidency of the G20 has the opportunity to set a new course for job-centred growth. The joint meeting of G20 finance ministers and labour ministers planned for 2013 is welcome. It raises the hope that job creation plans can be backed by financial commitments on jobs and infrastructure investment.

“However, there remains a dangerous credibility gap between G20 Leaders’ past statements on jobs and many G20 Governments’ actions that are pushing economies back into recession and destroying jobs,” said Ms. Burrow.

The ITUC Global Poll 2012 of 13 countries including 10 G20 economies showed only one in ten believe austerity is working.

The poll also showed 71% of people don’t feel they have job security, and only 11% have seen their incomes gone up more than the cost of living.

“Jobs can be created by restoring confidence through investments in the green economy and expanding job programmes and quality apprenticeships. The financial sector must increase its contribution to the growth of the real economy and to national budgets,” said John Evans, General Secretary Trade Union Advisory Committee to the OECD.

In Moscow, December 13th, Russian unions FNPR and KTR, and the international union movement are launching the Labour 20. The Labour 20 are calling for:

• A G20 jobs plan
• Regulation of the financial system and the introduction of a financial transactions tax
• A G20 action plan and fund to support the implementation of social protection floors
• Giving the continuation of the G20 Employment Task Force real teeth.

The L20 are the leaders of the trade unions from G20 countries serviced by the ITUC and the Trade Union Advisory Committee to the OECD. Unions (L20) and business (B20) will be discussing in 2013 the scaling up of investments in jobs and training.

Read the new report about the L20 and its priorities for 2013:

The L20 leaders will meet in Moscow 19-20th June.

The joint G20 Finance and Labour Ministers meeting will take place 19th July in Moscow.

The ITUC Global Poll 2012 represents the opinions of more than 1.4 billion people, or 20 percent of the current world population. TNS Opinion carried out the fieldwork from 10 April - 6 May 2012 in 13 countries: Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, France, Germany, Greece, Indonesia, Japan, Mexico, South Africa, UK and the USA.

Quota samples were used to reflect national proportions in terms of age, gender and region. In each country, approximately 1,000 respondents were interviewed, with a total of 13,087 respondents.

The ITUC represents 175 million workers in 308 affiliated national organisations from 153 countries and territories.

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