On June 29, the 2019 summit of the G20 ended. Its result reflects the strong ongoing interimperialist dispute for the world profit. On one hand, the commercial war between China and the United States and protectionism, and on the other hand, a free trade agreement between the European Union and the Mercosur that favours imperialist capitals. Two faces of the same coin. Everything was seasoned with a cynical declaration, signed by everyone except Trump, in favour of the environment.
The meeting between U.S. president Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping ended similarly to the meeting in Buenos Aires in 2018, with the announcement of a truce in which the U.S. commits to not rising tariffs on Chinese prices and partially stopping the trade ban on the technological firm Huawei while the negotiations last. China committed to a similar gesture.
Obsessed with lowering the trade deficit that the U.S. has with the Asian giant, deregulating its economy to obtain a greater income from agricultural and industrial products and U.S. capital investments and, fundamentally, slowing its technological advance that questions the strategic hegemony of the United States, Trump threatened to apply a 25% tax on another US $ 325,000 million of Chinese imports (1).
In the short term, this new “truce” obeys the difficulties of the Chinese with the tax on their products and the hard blow that meant the blockade on Huawei and the difficulties of the US for the increase of the prices of important products if the tax policy continues. The “commercial war” cools down the world economy and threatens the current increment of the US GNP, changing the forecasts of growth of the capitalist businesses.
In the medium term, this new “truce” can only be considered as one more moment in the dispute for the capitalist profit. The current armistice will hardly end up differently than the last, since the causes that drove them to the “commercial war” continue on developing and deepening.
U.S. “protectionism” vs. “free” trade
The truce is signed with new Chinese concessions on the purchase of U.S. agricultural products. Concessions obtained by a Trump that did not stop attacking his associates: the European Union, Germany in particular, for being in default on its payments to NATO and buying gas from Russia; India for taxing U.S. products after this country imposed them as a defensive response to the loss of benefits decided by the U.S. government; and even its old associate, Japanese imperialism, with which it has to re-negotiate its defence treaty. U.S. protectionism is nothing but the necessity of U.S. imperialism to dispute a greater portion of world profit.
On the other end, led by Europe, are the defenders of “free trade”, “multiteralism”, etc. Of a “freedom”, which, in reality, means more misery and oppression of working people caused by the negotiations of imperialist powers. They once again benefit from this free trade agreement between the European Union and Mercosur, which, if implemented, would mean a strong setback for Latin American economies that will give up any possibility of independent industrial development, deepening their role as exporters of primary products at the service of the profits of multinational and local concentrated capital sectors.
Other issues that marked this G20
Different issues marked this summit. The crisis with Iran, Venezuela, the migratory crisis, were part of the debates. Many of them were not part of the official agenda, but inevitably dominated the parallel meetings, where the important deals are usually reached, because of the devaluation and crisis of this imperialist forum.
As the deliberations were taking place and while the impact of the photo of the dead father with his young daughter on the Bravo River had not diluted yet, the captain of the ship Sea Watch was arrested for breaking the naval blockade on the Italian island of Lampedusa to save the lives of 40 rescued African immigrants, undressing the lies and hypocrisies of the defenders of “freedom and democracy”. Of those who have withdrawn their patrol ships from the Mediterranean Sea. They persecute and criminalize those who fulfil the humanitarian task of rescuing, those who mark the difference between life and death for thousands of African immigrants who continue to be thrown into the sea.
After a harsh negotiation, the final declaration of the summit was in favour of maintaining the Paris agreements to lower carbon emissions, with the exception of the United States. A declaration of pure cynicism since it is made by the greatest contributer (next to the US) to the continuity of climate change and the degradation of the planet. Even the United Nations itself had to declare on this emergency. The cynicism is obliged, none of the leaders there will take the necessary actions to lower this serious environmental deterioration. This would go against the interests of the multinational companies they represent. But the growth of environmental awareness and the mobilizations of thousands and thousands of young people in the metropolis, force them to these declarations of commitment.
A deepening crisis
Despite the new “truces” or the “cooperation” deals, this new summit reflected the continuity of the crisis and inter-imperialist dispute for greater profits. Profits they need to calm the crisis and problems their imperialist economies are in, that they cannot obtain from a greater exploitation of working people of the world, since imperialist arrogance is met with a generalized resistance to its austerity plans or its military interventions, like the Iranian nation against the U.S. siege.
Against the unresolvable crisis of the imperialist capitalist system that this G20 has reflected, it is more necessary than ever the question of building a revolutionary tool that fights for a different system, a socialist one. A task that is more urgent than ever, and those who build the ILS dedicate our greater efforts to it.
1. Last May, with the end of the negotiations, the U.S. government taxed U$S 250.000 million in Chinese imports and then blocked, with the excuse of the technological espionage, the sale to Huawei of software and hardware the company needs. The Chinese answered with taxes on U.S. products for U$S 110.000 million and the threat of blocking the sale of rare lands, essential for the development of the U.S. technological products.