G20 meet begins amid clamour for transparency in Fed tapering
Sydney: G20 ministers on Saturday began their two-day deliberations to work out a "real and tangible framework" to push global growth amid clamour for a more transparent tapering programme by the US Fed Reserve with a view to reducing volatility in the global financial markets.
Australia, which is the chair of the G20, wants the ministers to agree to a tangible plan to achieve collective global goal of promoting growth and lifting economies which are still reeling under the impact of slowdown.
Talking to reporters ahead of the G20 ministerial meeting, Australian Treasurer Joe Hockey hoped that the ministers would "lay down a real and tangible framework for increasing growth of the global economy in the next five years".
The finance ministers and the central bank governors of G20 nations, which represent 85 percent of the global economy, should come out with "real outcomes" to enhance cooperation to deal with volatility in global financial markets, he stressed.
The contentious issue, however, is the tapering or withdrawal of monetary stimulus by the US Federal Reserve as it is having major implications on the markets in developed and emerging economies.
Indian Finance Minister P Chidambaram who reached here today will also pitch for greater transparency in the US Fed's tapering operations, expeditious reforms of IMF and automatic sharing of tax information.
Hockey endorsed India's demand for a "forward guidance" on tapering by the US Federal Reserve when he made a case for a "no surprises policy" as far as monetary activities were concerned. "That is what the central bank governors are waiting for," he added.
The Fed first talked about tapering in May 2013, sending markets the world over into turmoil and the Indian rupee to a record low. Though the situation has improved much since then, the fears remain.
The US Fed has reduced its monthly bond purchases by USD 20 billion to USD 65 billion on signs of an improving US economy. The reduction in stimulus, it is feared, may affect capital flows to emerging markets and impact their currencies.
India is being represented by Reserve Bank Governor Raghuram Rajan and Economic Affairs Secretary Arvind Mayaram at the G20 ministerial which will provide crucial input to the leaders' summit to be held in Brisbane on November 15-16 this in the year.
At the meeting of the Finance and Central Bank Deputies yesterday, Mayaram made a strong case for expediting International Monetary Fund (IMF) quota reform to give greater voting powers to emerging economies.
Using strong words, he described the inability of the IMF to move ahead with the quota reforms as "first visible failure of the G20" and asked the member nations to expeditiously ratify the 14th General Review which aimed at providing greater say to the developing world in the multilateral body.
"We strongly stated that it is unfortunate that despite agreement in G20, implementation of 2010 reforms, which is vital for credibility, legitimacy and effectiveness of the IMF, have not been completed and we have missed the deadline of January 2014," he had said.
Chidambaram is expected to pursue the matter further to get some concrete assurances from the G20 members with regard to expeditious reform of the multilateral body.
Besides the IMF reforms, India is also pressing for inclusion of tax avoidance besides tax evasions as part of the the overall global tax agenda. It will also push the case for automatic exchange of financial information that would help the member nations in dealing effectively with tax evasion.
The G20 is scheduled to come out with a communique on Sunday reflecting the broad consensus that would emerge during the two-day deliberations of the Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors.
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