The First G20 Meeting of Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors begins

Global economic leaders are holding a two-day meeting in Buenos Aires. Discussions on the future of work, infrastructure for development and the technology behind cryptocurrencies are on the agenda.

Key issues affecting the current and future global economy will be addressed today in Buenos Aires, at the First G20 Meeting of Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors of 2018.

Among those present are Jim Yong Kim, president of the World Bank; Mario Draghi, president of the European Central Bank; Christine Lagarde, managing director of the IMF; and Steven Mnuchin, Secretary of the Treasury of the United States. In all, 22 finance ministers, 17 central bank governors, and 10 heads of international organizations will be seated at the discussion table.

The leaders will take part in an intense, two-day meeting that addresses issues such as international financial architecture, the global tax system, financial regulation, and the technology behind cryptocurrencies.

They will also discuss two of the Argentine G20 presidency’s stated priorities: the future of work and infrastructure for development. For the future of work, finance leaders will seek to pin down the impact of technological change so as to be able to create more and better jobs. With respect to infrastructure, leaders will debate new ways to achieve more private sector participation to close the global infrastructure gap.

Finance ministers and central bank governors will also examine how to achieve an inclusive global tax system. They will analyse how the digital economy generates value, where that value is created, and how taxes can be reported and collected fairly, efficiently, and effectively without creating barriers to innovation.

Promoting digital inclusion is a further issue on the agenda, specifically how to take advantage of opportunities created by the digitalization of the economy to ensure the financial inclusion of people living in vulnerable circumstances.

The G20 finance deputies have been examining all of these issues over the past two days at the Buenos Aires Exhibition & Convention Centre (CEC). The G20 deputies are senior officials who are next in rank to the finance ministers and central bank governors. They have been taking preliminary steps to address each of the issues on the agenda, all of which are important to the future of the global economy.

This is the first ministerial meeting of the Argentine G20 presidency, and a key event in the G20's annual agenda. The recommendations that come out of the five meetings of finance ministers and central bank governors this year will be debated at the highest political level at the G20 Leaders’ Summit, which will be held on 30 November and 1 December in Buenos Aires.

The agenda

The official proceedings begin at 11.00 am local time today and conclude at 4.45 pm, when Argentine Treasury Minister Nicolás Dujovne will hold a joint press conference with OECD Secretary-General Ángel Gurría. Afterwards, finance ministers and central bank governors will participate in a recreational activity at the Argentine Polo Grounds.

Around 400 delegates representing 24 countries and 13 international organizations are in Buenos Aires for the meeting taking place at the CEC, as well as nearly 300 journalists from 23 countries. Located in the Recoleta neighbourhood and inaugurated in September 2017, the CEC is a modern building with a capacity of approximately 5,000. For this occasion, the CEC has been adapted to house a plenary room, an auxiliary room, a media centre, offices, and other amenities.

The agenda for the second day

Tomorrow delegation leaders will meet at 8.15 am local time, and sessions will be held from 8.45 to 2.45 pm. The press conference of the Argentine G20 presidency is scheduled for 3.00 pm, and will be given by Minister Dujovne and the president of the Argentine central bank, Federico Sturzenegger. It will be broadcast live, and followed by an official press release. Other delegations will also conduct their own press conferences.

About the G20

The G20 started out in 1999 as a meeting of finance ministers and central bank governors. In 2008, amidst the global financial crisis, it evolved into what it is today: a major forum that seeks to develop global policies to address the world’s most pressing issues. The G20 summits are attended by the heads of state and government of 19 of the world’s leading economies and the EU. Together, the G20 members represent 85% of global GDP, two-thirds of the world’s population, and 75% of international trade.