G20 communique focuses on terrorism, tax evasion and climate change

Hangzhou, Sep 5 (IANS) Terrorism, structural reforms, corruption and tax evasion were some of the key concerns which found mention in the joint communique released by the G20 countries on the second and last day of their Summit here on Monday.

These issues were raised by India at the grouping whose economies accounts for 85 percent of the world’s GDP.

India was, as its Sherpa (representative) to the Summit Arvind Panagariya said, able to “influence” the outcome of the event and 7,000-worded communique.

“We strongly condemn terrorism in all forms and manifestations, which poses serious challenges to international peace and security and endangers our ongoing efforts to strengthen the global economy and ensure sustainable growth and development,” the communique said.

“In confronting terrorism, we remain committed to effectively exchanging information, freezing terrorist assets, and criminalizing terrorist financing,” it added.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping and heads of other member countries had raised the issue of terrorism.

In his last intervention at the Summit, Modi urged the member nations to unite against terror. Without naming Pakistan, he said one single country in South Asia was spreading terror in the region.

He also asked the grouping to eliminate safe tax havens which was adopted in the communique.

“Financial transparency and effective implementation of the standards on transparency by all, in particular with regard to the beneficial ownership of legal persons and legal arrangements, is vital to protect the integrity of the international financial system, and to prevent misuse of these entities and arrangements for corruption, tax evasion, terrorist financing and money laundering.”

The joint statement also endorsed China’s initiative to establish in China a Research Center on International Cooperation Regarding Persons Sought for Corruption and Asset Recovery in G20 member states, which will be operated in line with international norms.

India, it was reported, will raise objections to such a centre.

“Recognizing the detrimental effects of corruption and illicit finance flows on equitable allocation of public resources, sustainable economic growth, the integrity of the global financial system and the rule of law, we will reinforce the G20s efforts to enhance international cooperation against corruption, while fully respecting international law, human rights and the rule of law as well as the sovereignty of each country,” the communique said.

It also stressed the grouping’s commitment to sustainable development, strong and effective support and actions to address climate change

“We commit to complete our respective domestic procedures in order to join the Paris Agreement as soon as our national procedures allow. We welcome those G20 members who joined the Agreement and efforts to enable the Paris Agreement to enter into force by the end of 2016 and look forward to its timely implementation with all its aspects.”

India told the members that it was not ready to ratify the Paris accord before 2016 and that it was equally concerned over climate change, but needed more time to cut emissions.



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