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Downing Street Summit Conference: Declaration

Volume 931: debated on Monday 9 May 1977

The text on this page has been created from Hansard archive content, it may contain typographical errors.

In two days of intensive discussion at Downing Street we have agreed on how we can best help to promote the well-being both of our own countries and of others.

The world economy has to be seen as a whole; it involves not only co-operation among national Governments but also strengthening appropriate international organisations. We were reinforced in our awareness of the inter-relationship of all the issues before us, as well as our own interdependence. We are determined to respond collectively to the challenges of the future.

—Our most urgent task is to create more jobs while continuing to reduce inflation. Inflation does not reduce unemployment. On the contrary it is one of its major causes. We are particularly concerned about the problem of unemployment among young people. We have agreed that there will be an exchange of experience and ideas on providing the young with job opportunities.

—We commit our governments to stated economic growth targets or to stabilisation policies which, taken as a whole, should provide a basis for sustained non-inflationary growth, in our own countries and world-wide, and for reduction of imbalances in international payments.

—Improved financing facilities are needed. The International Monetary Fund must play a prominent role. We commit ourselves to seek additional resources for the IMF and support the linkage of its lending practices to the adoption of appropriate stabilisation policies.

—We will provide strong political leadership to expand opportunities for trade to strengthen the open international trading system, which will increase job opportunities. We reject protectionism it would foster unemployment, increase inflation and undermine the welfare of our peoples. We will give a new impetus to the Tokyo Round of Multilateral Trade Negotiations. Our objective is to make substantive progress in key areas in 1977. In this field structural changes in the world economy must be taken into consideration.

—We will further conserve energy and increase and diversify energy production, so that we reduce our dependence on oil. We agree on the need to increase nuclear energy to help meet the world's energy requirements. We commit ourselves to do this while reducing the risks of nuclear proliferation. We are launching an urgent study to determine how best to fulfil these purposes.

—The world economy can only grow on a sustained and equitable basis if developing countries share in that growth. We are agreed to do all in our power to achieve a successful conclusion of the CIEC and we commit ourselves to a continued constructive dialogue with developing countries. We aim to increase the flow of aid and other real resources to those countries. We invite the COMECON countries to do the same. We support multilateral institutions such as the World Bank, whose general resources should be increased sufficiently to permit its lending to rise in real terms. We stress the importance of secure private investments to foster world economic progress.

To carry out these tasks we need the assistance and co-operation of others. We will seek that co-operation in appropriate international institutions, such as the United Nations, the World Bank, the IMF, the GATT and OECD. Those among us whose countries are members of the European Economic Community intend to make their efforts within its framework.

In our discussions we have reached substantial agreement. Our firm purpose is now to put that agreement into action. We shall review progress on all the measures we have discussed here at Downing Street in order to maintain the momentum of recovery.

The message of the Downing Street Summit is thus one of confidence:

—In the continuing strength of our societies and the proven democratic principles that give them vitality;

—that we are undertaking the measures needed to overcome problems and achieve a more prosperous future.

8th May 1977.