International News

Pope backs Australian-based drive to use globalisation to aid poor

Wednesday 11 January 2017

Media and Communications Office, and Tess Livingstone, The Australian

The Pope has given his support to an Australian-based foundation seeking to harness the benefits of globalisation to benefit the world’s poor.

Pope Francis will meet 80 delegates from the Global Foundation’s Rome Roundtable on Friday and Saturday, including former prime minister Kevin Rudd, former Liberal Party director Brian Loughnane, and Australian Catholic University vice-chancellor Greg Craven, who will outline the significance of inclusive globalisation in his address at the discussion in Rome. Keynote speaker at the roundtable dinner will be His Eminence, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, Secretary of State to the Pope.

The 2017 conference will address the topics of inclusive globalisation; increasing female participation in the economy and workforce; and slavery-proofing supply chains. It will also provide a progress report on previous commitments organisations have made regarding economic, social and environmental concerns, such as the G20 for economic governance, the UN Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Climate Accord.

Others participating at the forum include Bank of England Governor, Mark Carney; Pacific Islands Forum CEO, Dame Meg Taylor; Anglo-American CEO, Mr Mark Cutifani; Consumer Goods Forum CEO, Mr Peter Freedman; Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank Vice President, Sir Danny Alexander; and Global Foundation Secretary General Mr Steve Howard.

Professor Craven’s contribution will address the impact of international events and what action can be taken to mitigate these effects.

Ahead of his departure for Rome, Professor Craven said, ‘at a time when people are feeling more vulnerable about the level of risk and uncertainty in the world, the effects of global events are felt at community level.

‘Instead of closing ourselves off from it, we need to ask what we are doing to contribute to the common good, and consider how we as individuals and as an organisation can strengthen hope and confidence about the future’.

Cardinal George Pell, the Vatican’s Prefect for the Economy, will address the gathering, which will also be attended by several senior Anglican archbishops, including David Moxon, the Archbishop of Canterbury’s delegate to the Holy See.

Global Foundation secretary-general Steve Howard, an Australian businessman, said the meeting would focus on global progress in economic, social and environmental matters including eradication of forced labour from global supply chains; strengthening partnerships for business and religions; and improving the economic empowerment of women.

‘The participation of Pope Francis … will elevate the significance of the meeting and the imperatives for global action over talk,’’ he said. ‘Against the backdrop of current trends, of discontinuity and rupture in some political and economic systems across the world, the roundtable will consider ways to restore confidence, trust and optimism in the global economy.’

Information on the work of the Global Foundation may be found here
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