British PM’s Statment to the House of Commons in London.
Thank you, Mr Speaker, with your permission, I would like to make a brief statement on the G20 Summit in Indonesia, but first I’d like to address Russia’s missile strikes on Ukraine this week.
On the very day that I and others confronted the Russian Foreign Minister across the G20 Summit table with the brutality of his country’s actions, on the very day that President Zelenskyy addressed the G20 with a plan to stop the war, Russia launched over 80 separate missile strikes at Ukraine.
The targets were innocent people and civilian infrastructure; the aim, to cast the population into darkness and cold.
Once again Russia has shown its barbarity, and given the lie to any claim that they are interested in peace.
During the bombardment of Ukraine on Tuesday an explosion took place in Eastern Poland. The investigation into this incident is ongoing – and it has our full support.
As we have heard the Polish and American Presidents say, it is possible that the explosion was caused by a Ukrainian munition, which was deployed in self-defence. Whether or not this proves to be the case, no blame can be placed on a country trying to defend itself against such a barrage.
The blame belongs solely to Russia.
I spoke to President Duda yesterday to express my sympathy and pledge our solidarity. I also spoke to President Zelenskyy on a joint call with Prime Minister Trudeau to express our continued support. And I met my G7 and NATO counterparts at the side lines of the G20.
We will help our Polish allies to conclude their investigation. And we will continue to stand with Ukraine in the face of Russia’s criminal aggression.
Mr Speaker, the Bali Summit took place amidst the worst economic crisis since 2008.
The G20 was created to grip challenges like this. But today’s crisis is different, because it is being driven by a G20 member. By turning off the gas taps and choking off the Ukrainian grain supply Russia has severely disrupted global food and energy markets. The economic shockwaves will ripple around the world for years to come.
So together with the other responsible members of the G20 we are delivering a decisive response.
Almost all G20 members called out Russia’s actions, declaring that “today’s era must not be one of war.” We will work together to uphold international law and the UN Charter. And we will act to protect our collective economic security.
The G20 agreed to use all available tools to support the global economy and ensure financial stability. That means international financial institutions mobilising more resources to support developing countries. It means continuing to call out those who exploit their lending power to create debt traps for emerging economies. And it means tackling the causes of rising inflation head on including by delivering fiscal sustainability.
We pledged our support for the UN-brokered deal to keep grain shipments moving in the Black Sea. That deal I am pleased to say is to be renewed.
Two thirds of Ukraine’s wheat goes to developing countries. With famine looming, it is desperately needed and Russia must uphold its part of the deal..
We agreed action to improve energy security by accelerating the transition to clean energy. And we launched a new Just Energy Transition Partnership with Indonesia which will unlock billions in private finance for new green energy infrastructure. And finally we committed to maintain free markets, free trade and to reform the World Trade Organization.
Mr Speaker, yesterday I held my first my meeting with President Biden. We pledged to redouble our support for Ukraine and to continue deepening our cooperation, including on energy security and managing the challenges posed by China.
I met Prime Minister Modi, where we reviewed progress on our forthcoming FTA. I discussed our accession to the CPTPP with the Prime Ministers of Japan, Canada and Australia. And I met with almost every other leader at the summit, with the exception of Russia.
In each of these discussions there was a shared determination to restore stability, deliver long-term growth and drive a better future, one where no single country has the power to hold us back.
In just a few moments, My Rt Hon Friend the Chancellor will build on these international foundations when he sets out the Autumn Statement, putting our economy back onto a positive trajectory and restoring our fiscal sustainability.
Mr Speaker, by being strong abroad, we strengthen our resilience at home. So we will continue to support Ukraine. We will continue to stand up for the rule of law and the fundamental principles of sovereignty and self-determination, and we will build a global economy that is more secure, more stable and more resilient.
Because this is what the gravity of the moment demands and this how we will ensure that our country emerges from this crisis stronger than it was before.
And I commend this statement to the House.