G20 leaders held their annual summit in Hangzhou, China on September 4-5. USCIB participated in the B20 Trade and Investment taskforce this past year, and we were pleased to see that the G20 leaders statement included support for several issues on trade that were part of the B20 recommendations. Some of the key aspects of the statement:
- G20 leaders committed to ratification of the Trade Facilitation Agreement by the end of 2016 and called on other WTO members to do the same.
- They committed to advancing negotiations in the WTO on issues remaining from the Doha Development Agenda and recognized the need to discuss in the WTO other issues that may be of common interest to members and of importance to today’s economy.
- Leaders reiterated their opposition to protectionism and extended their commitments to standstill and rollback of protectionist measures until the end of 2018.
- Those participating in the Environmental Goods Agreement negotiations welcomed the landing zone achieved in the EGA negotiations and reaffirmed their efforts to conclude by the end of 2016.
- Leaders endorsed the G20 Strategy for Global Trade and Growth, under which the G20 will lead by example to lower trade costs, harness trade and investment policy coherence, boost trade in services, enhance trade finance, promote e-commerce, and address trade and development.
Following the summit, the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), for which USCIB serves as the American national committee, issued a statement calling on G20 leaders to match their actions to their words to push back against a rising tide of protectionism worldwide.
“In the current environment, it will be critical for the G20 governments to follow through on these and the other commitments they made in their communique,” said Rob Mulligan, USCIB’s senior vice president for policy and government affairs. “We will be working directly with the U.S. government and, through ICC, with other governments to press for effective action. We will also look to engage with German B20 leaders as Germany hosts the G20 for the coming year.”