Finance ministers, central bank governors and senior officials from Commonwealth and La Francophonie countries concluded their meeting with Russia, the 2013 G20 President, with a call on the group of leading economies to keep the objectives of narrowing the development gap and addressing the challenges of poor, small and vulnerable developing countries high on the agenda.
The meeting, which took place at the International Monetary Fund in Washington DC on 21 April 2013, identified financing for infrastructure, finance, human resource development, knowledge sharing and financial inclusion as key priority areas for attention of the G20 to ensure the creation of jobs and improve livelihoods.
The discussions also focused on proposals for the G20 to complement and support international efforts towards the creation of the post-2015 development framework, including how this UN-led successor programme to the Millennium Development Goals can be robust, focused, sustainable and achievable.
“As a key stakeholder in the global partnership for development, the G20 can help create a global environment that is conducive to growth and development,” read a statement issued at the end of the meeting.
Nigeria’s finance minister Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala briefed the meeting on the UN Secretary-General’s high-level panel on the post-2015 agenda, noting that the emerging view is that the successor framework must have universal application and be sustainable.
Participants said that while progress is being made to improve access to financial services in developing countries, over 70 per cent of the world’s adult population lack basic access to financial services, such as savings, bank accounts and credit facilities.
The outcome statement reads: “Many innovative means are being found and utilised in the poorest and smallest developing countries to improve access to financial services, by developing clear mechanisms to promote a better understanding of the financial system, its risks and benefits; establishing mechanisms to address consumer complaints and consumer protection; and promoting national initiatives to enhance financial education.”
Commonwealth countries that are in the G20, namely: Australia, Canada, India, New Zealand and South Africa were represented. In addition to Russia, other G20 countries that attended were Brazil and Mexico.