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The G20 is a multilateral forum bringing together 19 of the world's major economies and the European Union (EU). Its members account for more than 60% of the world population, 75% of global trade and more than 80% of world GDP. The members include Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Mexico, Republic of Korea, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Turkey, the United Kingdom, the United States, and the European Union.
Established in 1999, the G20 brings together advanced and developing economies to overcome crises together, particularly in Asia, Russia and Latin America. The goal of the G20 is to create and maintain solid, sustainable, balanced and inclusive global growth.
Initially, the G20 was a meeting between Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors. Since 2008, the G20 has hosted Heads of State at the annual Summit, with development sector discussions commencing in 2010. Since then, the G20 has consisted of the Finance Track and Sherpa Track. Fun Fact: Named after the nomadic people of Nepal who serve as guides, the G20 Sherpa Meetings lead the way to the Summit by carrying out negotiations and building consensus among leaders.
The climax of the G20 meeting process, bringing together heads of state/government.
The main forum has different focus areas. In the Finance Track, Ministerial Meetings are attended by finance ministers and central bank governors, known as the Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors Meeting (FMCBG), while the deputies’ meeting is known as the Finance and Central Bank Deputies Meeting (FCBD).
Comprised of experts from G20 member countries, the working groups handle specific issues relating to the broad G20 agenda for inclusion in the ministerial segment and ultimately the Summit.
One of the G20’s largest successes was overcoming the global financial crisis in 2008. The G20 has helped to change the face of global financial governance by issuing a massive coordinated fiscal and monetary stimulus package. The G20 has also increased IMF lending capacity along with that of several major development banks. Furthermore, the G20 is acknowledged for helping the world regain its footing on the growth path, while pushing important financial sector reforms.
G20 has urged OECD to increase the exchange of information concerning taxation. In 2012, the G20 pioneered the Base Erosion and Profit Sharing (BEPS) international collaboration issued by the OECD to end tax avoidance, which was finalised in 2015. Through BEPS, 139 member countries and jurisdictions are cooperating to end tax avoidance.
G20 initiatives to contain the pandemic include the deferral of foreign debt repayments among low-income countries, a USD5 trillion injection for Covid-19 containment efforts (Riyadh Declaration), reduction/removal of import duties and taxes as well as lower import duties on vaccines, hand sanitisers, disinfectants, medical equipment and medicaments.
In addition, the G20 also plays an important role in other international issues, including trade, climate change and development. In 2016, collective principles were applied to international investment. The G20 also supports the political movements that established the Paris Agreement on Climate Change in 2015 and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
Departing from various other multilateral forums, the G20 does not have a permanent secretariat, its agenda and activities are established by the rotating Presidencies in cooperation with the membership. As agreed at the Riyadh Summit 2020, Indonesia will assume the G20 Presidency in 2022, with the baton passed from Italy at the Rome Summit on 30th-31st October 2021.
Through this theme, Indonesia invites the whole world to work together, recover together, grow stronger and sustainably together.
High resolution images from the 1st FCBD - Bali, 9-10 December 2021.