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23 February 2014

G20 meeting of finance ministers and central bank governors in Sidney

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The G20 nations will aim to increase global growth by at least two percentage points over the next five years (ca. $2 trillion in economic activity), but are yet to endorse a clear action plan. Commissioner Šemeta welcomed the group's agreement on a global tax transparency standard.

"There is no room for complacency. Addressing these challenges requires ambition. We commit to developing new measures, in the context of maintaining fiscal sustainability and financial sector stability, to significantly raise global growth. We will develop ambitious but realistic policies with the aim to lift our collective GDP by more than 2 per cent above the trajectory implied by current policies over the coming five years. This is over US$2 trillion more in real terms and will lead to significant additional jobs. To achieve this we will take concrete actions across the G20, including to increase investment, lift employment and participation, enhance trade and promote competition, in addition to macro-economic policies. These actions will form the basis of our comprehensive growth strategies and the Brisbane Action Plan.

We recognise that monetary policy needs to remain accommodative in many advanced economies, and should normalise in due course, with the timing being conditional on the outlook for price stability and economic growth. This eventual development would be positive for the global economy and reduced reliance on easy monetary policy would be beneficial in the medium term for financial stability. In a transition phase, economic policy could help with measures to increase private sector demand, including investment. We all stand ready to take the necessary steps to maintain price stability, by addressing in a timely manner deflationary and inflationary pressures. All our central banks maintain their commitment that monetary policy settings will continue to be carefully calibrated and clearly communicated, in the context of ongoing exchange of information and being mindful of impacts on the global economy.

As markets react to various policy transitions and country circumstances, asset prices and exchange rates adjust. This might sometimes lead to excessive volatility that can be damaging to growth. While many economies are prepared for this, our primary response is to further strengthen and refine our domestic macro-economic, structural and financial policy frameworks. Exchange rate flexibility can also facilitate the adjustment of our economies. Some economies may need to rebuild fiscal buffers where policy space has eroded. We will consistently communicate our actions to each other and to the public, and continue to cooperate on managing spillovers to other countries, and to ensure the continued effectiveness of global safety nets.

We will continue to implement our fiscal strategies flexibly to take into account near-term economic conditions, so as to support economic growth and job creation, while putting debt as a share of GDP on a sustainable path. We will continue to work on improving these as part of our growth strategies."


"We endorse the Common Reporting Standard for automatic exchange of tax information on a reciprocal basis and will work with all relevant parties, including our financial institutions, to detail our implementation plan at our September meeting. In parallel, we expect to begin to exchange information automatically on tax matters among G20 members by the end of 2015. We call for the early adoption of the standard by those jurisdictions that are able to do so. We call on all financial centres to match our commitments. We urge all jurisdictions that have not yet complied with the existing standard for exchange of information on request to do so and sign the Multilateral Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters without further delay. We stand ready to give tougher incentives to those 14 jurisdictions that have not qualified for Phase 2 of the evaluations. We will engage with, and support low-income and developing countries so that they benefit from our work on tax. (Commissioner Šemeta's statement)

In 2014 we are focusing our efforts on substantially completing by the Brisbane summit key aspects of the core reforms we set out in response to the global financial crisis: building resilient financial institutions; ending too-big-to-fail; addressing shadow banking risks; and making derivatives markets safer. We want to promote resilience in the financial system and greater certainty in the regulatory environment to support confidence and growth. We will implement these reforms in a way that promotes an integrated global financial system, reduces harmful fragmentation and avoids unintended costs for business. We commit to cooperate across jurisdictions with a renewed focus on timely and consistent implementation supported by meaningful peer reviews, including OTC derivatives reform. In relation to this reform, we agree that jurisdictions and regulators should be able to defer to each other when it is justified by the quality of their respective regulatory and enforcement regimes, based on similar outcomes, in a non-discriminatory way, paying due respect to home country regulatory regimes."

Full statement

The Greek Presidency underlines the fact that the EU’s objectives, aimed at developing ambitious strategies to support growth and jobs, as well as investment, trade and international cooperation in tax matters, have been broadly embraced.

The Presidency notes with satisfaction that particularly in financing infrastructure and small and medium-sized enterprises, the G20 committed to undertake reforms to improve the investment climate, by removing constraints to private investment, by establishing sound policies and stable regulatory frameworks and by emphasizing the role of market incentives and disciplines.

Press release

Algirdas Šemeta, EU Commissioner for Taxation, has welcomed the G20 Finance Ministers' agreement today on a new global standard which will reinforce the fight against tax evasion and improve tax transparency worldwide. At their meeting in Sydney, the G20 gave the green light to the global standard for the automatic exchange of information. They are due to agree implementation plans at their next meeting in September. The new standard was developed by the OECD, with strong support and input from the EU.

Commissioner Šemeta said: "Today is another boost for transparency and fairness in global taxation. The EU knows the value of automatic information exchange in fighting tax evasion, and has been its international flag-bearer for years. As such, we brought significant, practical input to the table in developing this new global standard. Our focus has been on a standard that can be smoothly and effectively implemented, with minimum disruption for our businesses. I am very glad that this is reflected in what was adopted today. I thank and highly commend the OECD for the excellent work they have done. Now, the EU must continue to lead by example in tax good governance. We intend to implement the new standard along with those countries which have committed to its early adoption. And we will be encouraging our neighbours and international partners, including major financial centres, to do the same."



Global growth firmer, but recovery weak-IMF-Note to-G-20

Transcript of a press conference by IMF/Lagarde

FSB-Chair's Letter to G20-Ministers and Governors on financial reforms

© G-20

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