December 4, 2021

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“In terms of climate, the G20 has a massive problem in the East”

The physical absence of Putin and Xi Jinping, who will be linked from afar, to divisions between East and West over climate, a topic on which the spotlight will be focused to coincide with next week’s environment conference in Scotland: there appear to be preconditions for this G-20’s failure. Is this correct?

No, because there is agreement on three of the four points on the G-20 agenda: the pandemic, growth, climate and Afghanistan. The most obvious is the pandemic: a commitment to share vaccines with countries in the southern hemisphere meets the demands of Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Indonesia and even India. On this front, if it ends like this, the summit will be a success, serving as an anti-epidemic agreement around the United Nations goal of vaccinating 70 percent of the population by September 2022 with Western vaccines: Russian and Chinese. They will not succeed and Moscow and Beijing will “suffer” from this agreement. In terms of economic recovery, there is also a consequence to show: the IMF’s choice to provide $650 billion in SDRs to weaker countries is an unprecedented and extraordinary economic move. At the moment, two major crises are open: in Argentina and Lebanon, countries that threaten shocks. Allocating this extraordinary money means supporting recovery globally. In addition, Western countries put together the appointment in mid-November to reform the World Trade Organization which the Chinese did not want. As for Afghanistan, the result is much weaker, and we will not go beyond what was decided at the extraordinary G-20 meeting last October 12, but objectively speaking it is very little because the idea of ​​helping Afghans without recognizing the Taliban is very weak.

on the climate?

The real flaw looms in the climate, which is the most sensitive topic of public opinion in the West. The danger is very serious because on the day the G20 closes, COP26 opens and the short circuit is the difference in approach between Europe and the United States on the one hand, and China on the other. There is a ten-year gap. In terms of method, the two fronts are very similar: They say it takes 10 years of environmental transformation to reach zero emissions. But the dates are ten years from the stage: we aim to reach the targets as early as 2030, they want to start the transition in 2030. The West is also united on the goal of achieving climate neutrality in 2050, while China aims for 2060 It is a huge difference behind having Various industrial systems: China is still heavily dependent on coal, Russians on gas and oil, and Westerners are trying with great difficulty to free themselves from these energy sources starting now, as calls for a green environment. A deal despite the many divisions within the European Union. Then there is India’s position, which has its own theory. New Delhi claims the right to pollute because the West, it says, has already polluted, started earlier, consumed before, and now “it is up to us” to develop our industry.

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explosive mixture.

The risk of a short circuit in the climate between western China and the Russians and the Indians is real. It would be a huge cultural and economic short circuit. It could jeopardize the Italian presidency, jeopardize COP26 but the real problem lies with Biden. Because if the president of the United States fails to strike a deal with Beijing, he will have a hard time forcing an environmental shift on Congress and may be tempted to turn back. While here in Europe, member states can ask the EU Commission for the sacrifices required, if they see that Asian competitors are not making them.

Perhaps the Western narrative is too self-centered, on our alleged delays in the fight against climate change. You may not see that the problem is in the East.

The real danger is not only Greta’s protest. The point is that both Biden and Europe have come a long way in making decisions about environmental transformation, but the massive problem we face in the East is not clear enough in the general narrative.

And the lack of an agreement will add fuel to the fire in US-China relations.

Of course, but also between Europe and China. but how? We give up diesel and change our entire fleet and they still run on gasoline? Imagine what this could mean for the auto market.

The European Union in the G20: What is the picture that comes to your mind?

Today Europe is my cyclist. We can say that Europe has a privileged understanding between Draghi and Macron, but the French president faces a very uncertain election. The bottom line is that the strongest, most credible and most experienced captain is Mario Draghi and this costs him the unprecedented responsibility of an Italian captain. I don’t remember a similar situation by heart. However, it is complicated because its power reflects the weakness of all European nations. When it comes to coordinating the European standings, Draghi is facing a weak team. That is why he chose to have a privileged understanding with Macron, as well as in light of this G-20 and the environment. All this is waiting for Germany to express its policy: Germany does not exist at the moment.

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There is nothing, but it objects to the offer of joint gas storage made by Italy, France and Spain, as happened yesterday at the Council of Energy Ministers.

Also here is the initiative in Italian, French and Spanish. These are the leading countries at the moment. The situation is unprecedented because there is no longer a British counterweight, the sovereign states do not express their policies but only protest and the absence of Germany also appears in all Polish attacks: Poland raises its voice because Germany does not exist. So the leader of Europe is Draghi but practicing his leadership is very difficult because he is dealing with a very weak team.

It sounds like an Italian cliché, but at this point I ask you: Can the Italian presidency of the G-20 make a difference?

In my opinion, yes. My rider would be a really great intermediate. There is a difficulty due to the fact that Putin and Xi Jinping will not be physically present. But India’s Modi will be here. If Draghi is successful in getting India into the climate agreement, it will be a first-class international achievement. This G-20 is a test of Draghi’s international leadership, very difficult, but he has a number of assets: he has the support of the Biden and Macron administration and he has a British interest in making the G-20 succeed on his side because London is the same. Co-chair of Cop26. However, the game is very difficult.

Can we at least accept the liquidation between Biden and Macron after the clash on submarines and the Indo-Pacific alliance that the United States signed with Great Britain and Australia as an anti-Chinese alliance? The presidents of France and the United States will meet in Rome on Friday.

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On the Pacific, the United States and France are more committed to cooperating than it seems because France is the only European country that is also a Pacific nation. Paris has military bases in Tahiti and New Caledonia. One million French people live on the island of Reunion. It is true that Britain is the most exposed ally in supporting the US in the tug of war with China over Taiwan, but in the long run, the country the US needs in the Pacific is France. I think that reconciliation between Biden and Macron is inevitable. The Americans will have to find a way to mend the insult they inflicted on the French, but it is in the interests of the United States to cooperate with the French and vice versa. But all of Europe must give itself a policy on the Pacific. The United States is not abandoning the European Union, but has chosen to prioritize the Pacific region to meet the Chinese challenge and ask Europe to stay with them. Saying “they’re giving up on us” means not thinking about the situation.

I think the Europeans are angry that Biden did not warn them about the birth of Okos.