Eine andere Sicht auf die G20
Die Position der Japanischen Kommunistischen Partei (JCP)
von Andreas Wehr
Globalisierungsgegner, die Friedensbewegung und linke Parteien machen gemeinsam mobil gegen den Gipfel der Gruppe G20 Anfang Juli in Hamburg. In den Aufrufen wird sie pauschal verantwortlich für die Kriege in der Welt, für Armut und Unterentwicklung gemacht. Dabei bleibt unberücksichtigt, dass die G20 – im Unterschied zur G7 - auch aus Schwellenländern wie Russland und China besteht. Es wird daher nicht zwischen Opfern und Tätern unterschrieden, demonstriert wird gegen beide.
Ganz anders die Haltung der Japanischen Kommunistischen Partei (JCP). Sie sieht in der Etablierung der G20 einen wichtigen Schritt hin zur Demokratisierung der globalen ökonomischen Beziehungen. Auf ihren Parteitagen 2010 und 2014 hat die JCP ihre Haltung gegenüber der G20 beschrieben. Die entsprechenden Passagen werden im Folgenden auf Englisch dokumentiert.
Die JCP ist die größte kommunistische Partei in einem nichtsozialistischen Land. Sie hat mehr als 300. 000 Mitglieder, bei Wahlen ist sie regelmäßig die zweitstärkste Partei des Landes und ihre Parteizeitung Akahata (Rote Fahne) erreicht an Wochenenden eine Auflage von 1.3 Millionen Exemplare.
Dokumentation der JCP-Parteitagserklärungen zur G20:
The Japanese Communist Party 25th Congress Resolution
Adopted January 13-16, 2010
Part 14. Moves for a democratic international economic order making an advance
We are witnessing in the world a pursuit of a new international economic order.The international economic crisis that has deepened since 2008 has made it clear to everyone that the existing international economic order is incompatible with the ongoing structural changes in the world. The crisis has greatly accelerated the move toward an equitable and democratic international economic order in which not just a handful of developed capitalist countries but also emerging or developing countries can take part with equal rights.
The Summit of the Group of Twenty (G20) in Pittsburgh, in September 2009 “designated the G20 to be the premier forum for our international economic cooperation” and it was decided by all parties to hold regular meetings. The Summit statement is a testimony to the fact that the traditional economic order represented by Group of Eight (G8) major powers cannot properly address the present financial and economic crisis.
A document adopted at the Pittsburgh Summit, “Core Values for Sustainable Economic Activity,” stipulated: “We recognize that there are different approaches to economic development and prosperity, and that strategies to achieve these goals may vary according to countries’ circumstances.” Emerging and developing countries in pursuit of economic development with their “different approaches” carry significant weight in the G20, and this first ever enunciation of such a position in a G20 document is worthy of attention.
The global economic crisis was met with strong international criticism and dealt a fatal blow to the neoliberal policy dubbed the “Washington Consensus” imposed on the world by the U.S. government along with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank. The failure of this policy is admitted by the statements of the central players of major countries: “The old Washington consensus is over” (British Prime Minister Gordon Brown) and “there was an artificial complacency about the dangers of markets going off the rails” (U.S. President Barack Obama).
It is also worth noting that the limitation of the G20 itself has already been pointed out. The Commission of Experts (Stiglitz Commission) set up at the initiative of Rev. Miguel d’Escoto, then president of the U.N. General Assembly, asserted in its 2009 report that “the decisions concerning necessary reforms in global institutional arrangements must be made” by the United Nations, “the only institution that has this broad legitimacy.” While praising the initiatives of the G20, the report thus made a case for “G192,” a framework in which all the member states of the United Nations can participate as equals.
The old economic order that has dominated the world, with the U.S. government, the IMF and the World Bank in the “control tower,” and with the G8 as the major political platform, has been struck by contradictions and now crumbling amid the global economic crisis. The world is thus pushing for an end to the old economic order and taking significant steps forward in creating a new democratic international economic order.
The JCP Program boldly takes on the task to “check economic hegemony by the great powers and seek to establish a democratic international economic order based on respect for the economic sovereignty of every nation with the establishment of fair and equitable relations.” This is now on the international political agenda.
The Japanese Communist Party 26th Congress Resolution
Adopted on January 18, 2014
Part.9. Struggle for a democratic international economic order
With the world changing structurally and the power of emerging and developing countries growing significantly, an era when the international economy cannot be controlled only by advanced capitalistic countries has emerged. A new democratic international economic order is keenly needed in tune with the drastically changing world.
What is most important at present is to establish an international economic order based on equality and mutual benefit, which respects differences in social systems and stages of economic development as well as socio-economic realities without imposing particular economic models such as so-called "American standards" from the outside. This now becomes the real agenda in world politics. The Leaders' Statement in the G20 Pittsburgh Summit in September 2009 noted, "We recognize that there are different approaches to economic development and prosperity, and that strategies to achieve these goals may vary according to countries' circumstances." This recognition is important.
In particular, democratic rules are urgently needed to govern the international economy and democratically regulate large multinational corporations on following points:
- Rules to stop abusive movements of speculative money. The money game operated by speculative capital has caused serious damage to the real economy in many countries and pushed up prices of crude oil and grains, putting heavy strains on people's lives. Since the global financial crisis of 2007-08, the G20 countries started considering various financial regulations, some of which have been already enforced. Moreover, 11 member states of the European Union have agreed to introduce a financial transaction tax. Such measures should be expanded.
- Rules to stop tax avoidance by multinational corporations. The G20 has given this issue a high priority, calling on the member countries "to ensure that international [tax regulations as well as domestic tax regulations] do not allow or encourage multinational enterprises to reduce overall taxes paid by artificially shifting profits to low-tax jurisdictions."
- Rules to stop international competition in lowering corporate tax rates. Recently, many countries have cut corporate tax rates in order to attract foreign investment to such extent that governments' revenues dry up and amounts of sovereign debts soar. This situation can be described as "Multinationals prosper or nations perish." It has proven to be a myth that the more profitable corporations become with corporate tax cuts, the more prosperous nations become with increased tax revenues. This "harmful tax competition" among nations, as was repeatedly warned about by the OECD, was also a focus of discussions at the G20 summit in 2010 as a practice that needs to be reversed. Germany and France jointly proposed at the 2011 EU summit to introduce a minimum rate for corporate taxes. The international community should work together to urgently stop the corporate tax reduction competition and raise the present excessively lenient corporate tax rates.
- Rules to stop global competition in labor cost cuts. The fiercely competitive environment in a globalized economy fuels international competition to cut labor costs which undermine the foundation for a sound growth of the world economy as well as national economies. This "race to the bottom" in reducing labor standards world-wide triggers ruinous abuse of workers who are the actual source of economic growth, only to end up in a diminished industrial vitality. It is remarkable that the G20 Leaders' Declaration in September 2013 put emphasis on "growth through quality jobs," pointing out that "creating more productive and better quality jobs is at the heart of our countries' policies aimed at achieving strong, sustainable, and balanced growth, poverty reduction, and increasing social cohesion." The declaration also called for effective measures to ensure "a sustained decline in informal employment." It is important to have international rules strengthened to stop the competition to see who can cut labor costs the most.