For the last five years, the G-20 has played a significant role in mitigating the adverse effects of the financial and economic crisis that was felt across the globe in 2008. It accomplished this by taking decisive and coordinated measures to restore confidence, create jobs and promote economic growth. Canada has lived up to its G-20 commitments, contributing to global financial and economic stability while helping to lay the foundation for strong, sustainable and balanced growth in the country and abroad. Canada has been a leader in the G-20, hosting the successful Toronto Summit in June 2010 and co-chairing the key working group responsible for encouraging G-20 countries to commit to national policy measures and structural reforms since its inception in 2009.
- At the first G-20 Summit in Washington, D.C. in November 2008, G-20 members agreed to use fiscal measures to rapidly stimulate domestic economies, as appropriate, while maintaining a policy framework conducive to fiscal sustainability.
- Canada’s Economic Action Plan, launched in 2009, was a significant and extraordinary response. Canadians and businesses in Canada received significant benefits. Canada’s efforts, along with its G-20 partners, helped stabilize the economy and mitigate the risk of a systemic global economic collapse.
- At the Toronto Summit in 2010, G-20 leaders of advanced economies, including Canada, committed to fiscal plans to at least halve deficits by 2013 and stabilize or reduce government debt-to-GDP ratios by 2016. All advanced G-20 members are projected to meet their Toronto commitment of halving deficits from their 2010 levels by 2013. As well, most advanced economies remain on track to stabilize their debt levels by 2016.
- As a result of spending restraint measures implemented since 2010, the Government of Canada is on track to eliminate the deficit over the medium term and to return the debt-to-GDP ratio to a downward track well ahead of the Toronto 2010 commitment.
- At the Cannes Summit in November 2011, G-20 leaders committed to fully and consistently implement the Basel III requirements. The standards will raise the quality, quantity and international consistency of bank capital and liquidity. Basel III capital and liquidity rules will be phased-in from January 1, 2013 to January 1, 2019.
- Canada is on track to implement the Basel III requirements domestically, according to the G-20’s agreed timelines. In St. Petersburg, leaders will highlight that almost all G-20 countries have issued final regulations to implement the core Basel III capital requirements.
- At all G-20 Summits, leaders have committed to resist trade protectionism and promote trade and investment. At the Los Cabos Summit in 2012, they also extended their standstill commitment against new protectionist measures until 2014. In St. Petersburg, Canada will advocate for an extension to 2016.
- The Government of Canada understands the importance of open markets to prosperity, and has demonstrated continued leadership on the world stage by opposing protectionism and maintaining an active trade agenda. Canada has taken proactive, unilateral action to promote trade while also promoting the competitiveness of Canadian businesses. Since 2009, the Government of Canada has eliminated all tariffs on machinery, equipment and manufacturing inputs, making Canada a tariff-free zone for industrial manufacturers – a first in the G-20.
- Over the past seven years, Canada has concluded new free trade agreements (FTA) with nine countries, and is currently engaged in FTA negotiations with the European Union, India, Japan, Korea and other countries that comprise the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
- At the Toronto Summit in 2010, G-20 leaders established the Anti-Corruption Working Group to help prevent and tackle corruption. At the Los Cabos Summit in 2012, leaders extended the working group’s mandate – for which Canada is serving as co-chair – for an additional two years.
- In line with commitments made at various summits, most G-20 countries, including Canada, have now ratified the United Nations Convention against Corruption. In order to further tackle corruption issues, leaders are expected to endorse three sets of guiding principles (on bribery offences, solicitation, and mutual legal assistance) and launch a denial of entry experts network in St. Petersburg.
International Monetary Fund (IMF) Quota Reform:
- At the Seoul Summit in November 2010, G-20 leaders committed to working towards ratifying an IMF quota and governance reform package to increase the overall representation and voice of emerging markets and developing countries in the IMF’s governance structure. The 2010 reforms will be a big step towards improving the legitimacy and effectiveness of the IMF.
- Canada met its commitment to ratify the agreement before the G-20 target date.
- The G-20 recognizes the fundamental contribution of development to strong, sustainable and balanced growth. In 2010, leaders adopted the Seoul Multi-Year Action Plan on Development to guide the G-20’s work on international development. An accountability report, to be released in St. Petersburg, will focus on results of collective commitments and outline lessons learned. These will be used to frame the G-20’s approach to future work, including via the St. Petersburg Development Outlook.
- Canada has undertaken a leadership role on many development initiatives, including establishing the G-20’s Development Working Group and launching the Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) Finance Challenge at the Toronto Summit in 2010.
- Canada has also played a leadership role on food security in the G-20, including by spearheading the launch at the 2012 Los Cabos Summit of AgResults – an innovative, pay-on-results initiative, which aims to improve food security in developing countries in close cooperation with the private sector.
- Canada continues to champion accountability within multilateral fora, including the G-20. In St. Petersburg, the G-20 Framework Working Group will deliver its second accountability assessment to leaders, while the Development Working Group will release its first-ever accountability report. Meanwhile, the Anti-Corruption Working Group will deliver a progress report to leaders. These reports will help ensure that G-20 members live up to their commitments.