"The World and Japan" Database (Project Leader: TANAKA Akihiko)
Database of Japanese Politics and International Relations
National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies (GRIPS); Institute for Advanced Studies on Asia (IASA), The University of Tokyo

[Title] Biarritz Chair's Summary on Fighting Inequalities

[Place] Biarritz
[Date] August 26, 2019
[Source] Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan
[Full text]

1. The Presidency organized a dedicated session on "A G7 Fighting Inequalities", with the participation of relevant international organizations, in order to address inequalities. The Presidency stressed that they represent a significant challenge to global stability and prosperity, to the cohesion of our societies and to our citizens' trust in democratic institutions, undermining a robust and inclusive economic development. The Presidency highlighted that our rules-based international cooperation can be a powerful tool to fight inequalities.

2. The Presidency underlined the importance of the mobilization of international organizations in the fight against inequalities, and the significance of the Joint Statement by ILO Director-General, World Bank Group President, IMF Acting Managing Director, WTO Director-General and OECD Secretary-General, in the context of this session. Various Leaders also stressed the importance of tackling inequalities in the context of digitalization, and, in particular, of promoting policy discussions to harness the full potential of digital economy and data, including under the Osaka track.

3. Several Leaders reiterated that universal access to social protection and affordable quality health services with primary health care are a cornerstone. They called for further investments to strengthen health systems, with a strong focus on the replenishment of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. Several G7 members already announced a substantial financial contribution with a view to the Global Fund's replenishment conference, which will take place in Lyon on 9-10 October 2019, reaching more than USD 5 billion.

4. The Presidency commended the contributions brought by civil society engagement groups, in particular the joint declaration between the Labour7 and the Business7, in support of social dialogue to tackle inequalities, in particular, "promoting decent work, including fair and decent wages, and hence, achieving more inclusive growth [and] shared prosperity". The Presidency also stressed the importance of the concrete actions and recommendations that civil society can develop to address pressing global challenges.

5. The Presidency informed its partners of its meeting on the 23 August 2019 with private companies engaged to reduce inequalities (Business for Inclusive Growth Initiative). The Presidency welcomed the principle of an Inclusive Growth Financing Forum and invited interested partners to consider supporting the initiative. The official launch of the initiative will take place during the next Paris Peace Forum in November 2019.

6. The session also provided an opportunity for a fruitful discussion with representatives of the Gender Equality Advisory Council, an independent group working on a voluntary basis and in full autonomy from governments, who presented the Council's work regarding the practical and strategic needs of women and girls. The crucial role of its work and recommendations regarding good practices of new and innovative laws for gender equality was recalled by the Presidency. Canada, as a founder of the Council, and France, which renewed it in 2019, especially thanked the Gender Equality Advisory Council. The G7 Leaders adopted a separate declaration, launching the Biarritz Partnership for Gender Equality, supporting the International Fund for Survivors of Conflict-Related Sexual Violence, as well as girls' and women' education and training. The Presidency also informed its partners that France will work with UNESCO and other international organizations to host an international conference in Paris in 2020 to tackle the issue of bullying at school.