We live in a world in which technological innovation is rapidly transforming the nature of work and globalization is increasingly perceived as a cause of inequality. Demographic shifts, the effects of climate change, and uneven growth have put pressure on countries all over the world, especially fragile and conflict-affected states.
These challenges, however, also present tremendous opportunities, which we must seize together. All countries share a responsibility to focus on policies that encourage innovation, put people first, and deliver progress for everyone.
Providing an equal and fair chance at success
G7 leaders acknowledged a shared responsibility to work together to stimulate economic growth that benefits everyone and, in particular, those most at risk of being left behind. Leaders endorsed the Charlevoix Commitment on Equality and Economic Growth which reinforces our pledge to eradicate poverty, advance gender equality, foster income equality, ensure better access to financial resources, and create decent work and quality of life for all.
At the G7 Summit, leaders also agreed on a Charlevoix Commitment on Innovative Financing for Development to promote economic growth in developing countries. Leaders recognized the importance of development and humanitarian assistance to promote greater equality of opportunity, and will continue to work to develop innovative ways to ensure no one is left behind.
At home, the Government of Canada is working to make sure that every Canadian has an equal and fair chance at success – our future prosperity depends on it. We need to make sure that the benefits of a growing economy are felt by more and more people – with more good, well-paying jobs for the middle class and everyone working hard to join it.
Over the last two years, Canada’s economic growth has been driven by a stronger middle class. Canadians’ hard work, combined with historic investments in people and communities, has helped to create more good jobs. More help for those who need it also means more money for people to save, invest, and spend in their communities.
Economic growth that works for everyone requires the full and equal participation of women, the protection of workers’ rights, and the growth of the middle class, so that we can build economies that leave no one behind.
Canada is committed to working with its G7 partners to make sure that everyone can contribute to, and share in, the benefits of an increasingly integrated global economy.
G7 development ministers, as well as G7 finance ministers and central bank governors, met from May 31 to June 2, 2018, in Whistler, British Columbia. A joint meeting with development and finance ministers was held on June 1, 2018.
Development ministers examined gender-responsive humanitarian assistance and innovative approaches to development assistance to maximize impact and results towards the achievement of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals. The meeting focused on gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls, which play a key role in eradicating poverty, overcoming social barriers, and building more inclusive, prosperous and peaceful societies. Members of the Gender Equality Advisory Council for Canada’s G7 Presidency also participated in the meetings, offering important perspectives on how G7 countries can move toward achieving gender equality.
Development ministers agreed to take action on the following four themes outlined in the G7 Whistler declarations:
- Advancing the empowerment of adolescent girls to achieve sustainable development
- Combatting sexual exploitation and abuse in the development and humanitarian sectors
- Gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls in humanitarian action
- Accelerating innovation to increase the impact of development.
G7 finance ministers and central bank governors discussed the benefits of an open rules-based trading system. They also reiterated their commitment to improving the effectiveness and governance of global economic and financial institutions to build more resilient systems that work for everyone.
They recognized that a key challenge facing our economies is making sure that every person has a real and fair chance to contribute to, and share in, economic success, and that we need to adapt in order to take advantage of rapid changes in the modern economy. In addition, they examined how to best address cyber risks in the financial sector and foster greater tax fairness.
The joint meeting with development and finance ministers focused on solutions to pressing issues, including women’s economic empowerment. They also discussed how to build economic resilience against extreme weather events, and how to encourage more innovative approaches to financing sustainable development through private capital.
Finding solutions that provide equal opportunities
The G7 leaders are in a unique position to find concrete solutions that will promote equality of opportunity and fairness across genders and generations. Full economic cooperation at the global level means that no one and no country should be left behind.
Canada will continue to support progressive and open trade within a rules-based system so that the benefits reach all citizens, and so that everyone is equipped with the skills and tools they need to adapt to the changing nature of work and succeed in the global economy.
As our economies grow, Canada and its G7 partners must pay particular attention to traditionally vulnerable groups. This includes supporting women and girls in all aspects of society by addressing barriers to their full participation in the workforce and in their communities.
Together, we will work to support economic growth that benefits everyone, strengthen the middle class, and leave our citizens with a better, more hopeful future.