Peter Costello

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Australia to be Chairman and Host the Group of Twenty (G-20) in 2006

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AUSTRALIA TO BE CHAIRMAN AND HOST THE GROUP OF TWENTY (G-20) IN 2006

The Group of Twenty (G-20) Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors meeting in Berlin today appointed Australia to chair the grouping in 2006.

Since its establishment in 1999 in the aftermath of the Asian financial crisis, the G-20 has become the key forum of international economic and financial policymakers. G-20 members are the G-7, other industrialised countries including Australia, and important emerging economies1.

The G-20 is a unique group which can influence global economic outcomes. It brings together policymakers with the capacity to shape the international economic environment, in a workable forum not replicated elsewhere. The grouping’s comparative advantage lies in its relatively small but diverse membership, reflecting a balance of advanced and developing country views.

As host of the G-20, Australia has an important role in driving the agenda for 2006, focussing on economic and financial issues of global and regional importance. Chairing the 2006 meeting gives further recognition to the Government’s commitment to increasing Australia’s standing and influence in the international and regional arena, coming as it does a year before Australia’s hosting of APEC in 2007.

Australia looks forward to working closely with China, the 2005 Chair, and the current Chair, Germany. Together these economies will share membership of the G-20 ‘troika’, the management committee comprising the previous, current, and next year’s Chairs.

Australia will host one meeting for finance ministers and central bank governors, two meetings for finance and central bank deputies, and will participate in and host workshops on issues of global economic importance. This undertaking will be administered primarily by the Department of the Treasury with active support from the Reserve Bank of Australia.

BERLIN

1 G-20 members: Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Turkey, the United Kingdom and the United States. The European Union is represented by the Council presidency and the President of the European Central Bank. The managing director of the IMF and the president of the World Bank, plus the chairpersons of the International Monetary and Financial Committee and Development Committee of the IMF and World Bank, also participate as ex-officio members.

21 Nov 2004

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