U.S. President Barack Obama, right, and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, center, attend a meeting at the G-8 conference.10th July. L'AQUILA, Italy -- The Group of Eight leading industrial democracies pushed many priorities of their summit to larger groups of countries, placing the next moves in trade negotiations, climate-change talks and containing Iran's nuclear program in front of the so-called G-20 and the United Nations in September.
The nations gathered in L'Aquila did achieve one parting success, a $20 billion pledge over three years to overhaul food and agricultural assistance to the poorest countries. Only about half that pledge is new money, according to the White House, but it roughly doubles nonemergency agricultural assistance.On Thursday, it had seemed that the total would be only $12 billion, below the level intended just days before. Instead, last-minute pledges came from Canada and the European Union, among other countries.
Mr. Obama, in a Friday morning session, made an emotional, personal appeal, saying richer nations had an obligation to act. But he also said recipient nations had to acknowledge that they were complicit in their poverty, through corruption, a lack of transparency and other barriers to growth.
The joint statement on global food Security by world leaders gathered in the Italian town of L'Aquila for the G8 summit
The Joint Statement on Global Food Security ("L'Aquila Food Security Initiative") is endorsed by the G8 and by Algeria, Angola, Australia, Brazil, Denmark, Egypt, Ethiopia, India, Indonesia, Libya (Presidency of the African Union), Mexico, The Netherlands, Nigeria, People's Republic of China, Republic of Korea, Senegal, Spain, South Africa, Turkey, Commission of the African Union, FAO, IEA, IFAD, ILO, IMF, OECD, The Secretary General's UN High Level Task Force on the Global Food Security Crisis, WFP, The World Bank, WTO who attended the food security session at the G8 Summit in L'Aquila on 10 July 2009 and by the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), Bioversity/Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR), Global Donor Platform for Rural Development , Global Forum on Agricultural Research (GFAR).