G-20’s New Chairman, says Japan Wants Trade Imbalance on the 2019 Agenda
Japan will put issues ranging from global trade imbalances to the impact of aging populations on the agenda when it chairs next year’s meetings of leaders from the G-20 major economies, government officials said.
At the end of the G-20 Summit in Buenos Aires, Finance Minister Taro Aso unveiled the “priority issues” to be taken up by his counterparts and central bank governors next year when Japan takes over the chairmanship from Argentina.
Japan will host a G-20 financial leaders’ meeting in Fukuoka in Japan on 8-9 June, followed by a leaders’ Summit in Osaka on 28-29 June.
Tokyo will assert that global current account imbalances should be fixed via multilateral policy coordination rather than bi-lateral trade deals, the officials said.
Excessive imbalances should be adjusted by improving the ratio of investment and saving through macroeconomic policy and structural reform will be on the agenda.
Global trade imbalances had once been a Key topic at G-20 meetings with a focus on each country’s current account balance, or the overall flow of money including, but not confined to, trade.
This approach runs counter to President Donald Trump’s focus on narrowing the US trade deficit using import tariffs and bi-lateral deals.
President Trump’s “America First” policies and the U.S.-China trade dispute have overshadowed debates at recent G-20 meetings as he has splintered the status quo and taken the lead in all Key elements on the tables.
Saddled with an aging population and the industrial world’s heaviest public debt burden, Japan will also highlight the issue of aging and its impact on fiscal and monetary policies at next year’s G-20 meetings.
Also on the agenda under Japan’s G-20 chairmanship will be the need to ensure debt sustainability, given rising debt in low-income countries, and to promote high-quality infrastructure investment.