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The Prospective Agenda for the
2006 G7 Finance Ministers Meetings

Laura Sunderland
Senior Researcher, G8 Research Group
September 14, 2006

G7 Finance Ministers Meeting I, London/Moscow: February 9-11, 2006
G7 Finance Ministers Meeting II, Washington: April 21 2006
G7 Finance Ministers Meeting III, Sharm-el-Sheikh: May 21, 2006
G7 Finance Ministers Meeting IV, St. Petersburg: June 9-10 2006
G7 Finance Ministers Meeting V, Singapore, September 16, 2006
Notes
Earlier versions


This prospective agenda for the 2006 G7/8 Finance Ministers Meetings is compiled by the G8 Research Group from public sources as an aid to researchers and other stakeholders interested in the G8. It will be updated periodically as planning evolves and as more information becomes available about its intended and actual agenda.


G8 Finance Ministers Meeting IV, St. Petersburg: June 9-10, 2006

Australian Treasurer Peter Costello will attend the Finance Ministers meeting and lead a discussion on good governance in public finance.[1]

On June 6, 2006, Russian Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin said that the Finance Ministers meeting will discuss access to energy infrastructure in the world's poorest countries, infectious disease, terrorist financing, energy security, public finance management and financial literacy.[2] Kudrin stated that the Finance Ministers will not discuss global exchange rates, given that the Central Bank Governors will be absent from the meeting.[3] Kudrin announced that representatives from China, India, Brazil, Australia, South Korea and Nigeria will participate in the discussions on public finance management and donorship.[4] The Minister of Finance from Austria, which holds the chair of the European Union, as well as International Monetary Fund and World Bank representatives, will also attend.[5] ITAR-TASS further reports that a representative from the Organisation of Economic Cooperation and Development will attend.[6]

On June 6, 2006, Jiji Press stated that the Finance Ministers are expected to discuss the importance of communication between oil-producing and consuming countries, investment in oil exploration, production, transportation and refining, and energy efficiency and diversification.[7] They are set to discuss energy infrastructure in developing countries.[8] They will discuss infectious diseases and vaccine development.[9] They will also discuss financial education.[10] Global imbalances will also be discussed, on which the Finance Ministers are expected to agree to redress imbalances through structural reform of G8 countries rather than exchange rate adjustment mechanisms.

On June 6, 2006, Japanese Finance Minister Sadakazu Tanigaki said that the Finance Ministers will mainly discuss issues surrounding the high energy prices.[11] Tanigaki stated that Japan will call for improving the investment climate in countries that produce crude oil and other energy sources, and increasing energy efficiency in energy-consuming countries.[12]

On June 6, 2006, Japanese Finance Minister Sadakazu Tanigaki stated that the Finance Ministers will discuss rising energy prices and their effects on the global economy.[13] Tanigaki stated that "Energy issues have been discussed at past international meetings, such as the Group of Seven finance leaders' meeting, and there are many things that oil producers, consumers and financial markets can do to improve."[14]

On June 5, 2006, Jiji Press reported that the Finance Ministers are set to agree to promote financial education.[15] Jiji Press obtained a copy of the draft joint statement of the meeting, which stated that "The lack of financial literacy may also create favorable conditions for deceptive financial practices and unfair competition in financial markets... Financially educated consumers are better able to protect themselves from fraud and abuse. Moreover, well-informed and educated financial consumers contribute to more efficient financial markets by encouraging the development of new products and services thus increasing competition, innovation and product quality."[16] Jiji Press reported that the Finance Ministers are expected to refer to financial education due to the fact that G8 countries have aging population that requires asset formation and asset management after retirement.[17] They may also touch on how financial education is important in developing countries to create healthy financial markets.[18] There is also a plan to set up a framework policy dialogue with international institutions and emerging economies to provide examples of financial education.[19]

On June 5, 2006, Dow Jones reported that the finance ministers will not discuss foreign exchange issues in depth.[20] The Finance Ministers' statement is not expected to include text on exchange-rate policy, due to the fact that the Central Bank Governors will not be present. It is expected that the ministers will discuss global imbalances in terms of macroeconomic policy.[21] Analysts predict that talks on global imbalances may hurt the US dollar in the week following the Finance Ministers meeting.[22] Japanese Finance Minister Sadakazu Tanigaki said that it is inappropriate to solve global imbalances by adjusting exchange rates alone. Tanigaki also stated that the document released by the Finance Ministers will not contain an annex on global imbalances, like the April statement did.[23] The Finance Ministers may have a breakfast meeting on Saturday following their official meeting with Finance Ministers from non-G8 countries, such as China and possible South Korea.[24]

On June 5, 2006, British Finance Minister Gordon Brown announced that he would "call for world finance ministers to lead the debate about who benefits from globalisation" at the Finance Ministers meeting.[25] Brown also urged the Finance Ministers to look at ways of opening up the newest round of global free trade talks.[26]

On May 22, UK Chancellor of the Exchequer Gordon Brown said that he would press his fellow G8 finance ministers to boost funding for education in developing nations. Brown stated "In St. Petersburg in June, I will press other G8 finance ministers to commit to their share."[27]

On January 18, 2006, Russian Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin stated that the second meeting of the G8 Finance Ministers will be held in June, 2006 in St. Petersburg.[28]

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G7 Finance Ministers Meeting, London: February 9, 2006

The G7 Finance Ministers met in London on February 9 without Russia, before heading to Moscow on February 10, 2006.[29]

G8 Finance Ministers Meeting I, Moscow: February 10-11, 2006

The G8 Finance Ministers, along with Paul Wolfowitz, President of the World Bank and representatives from South Africa, India, China and Brazil met at the National Hotel in Moscow. The Finance Ministers released a signed communiqué detailing their discussions.

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G7 Finance Ministers Meeting II, Washington: April 21, 2006

The G7 Finance Ministers and Central Bank governors met on Friday, April 21 in Washington D.C., just prior to the World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF) annual spring meeting, which will be held over the weekend.[30] The ministers discussed rising oil prices and fluctuations in global currency rates,[31] including Chinese currency reform.[32] They will also discussed IMF reforms, including the issue of how to better represent emerging economies.[33] The ministers were expected to discuss debt relief and debt cancellation for the poorest countries.[34] Contrary to previous speculation on who will be invited to this meeting, Finance Ministers from China, India and Brazil did not attend.[35] Russia attended the meeting and participated in the majority of G7 discussions, according to Russian Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin.[36]

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G7 Finance Ministers Meeting II, Sharm-el-Sheikh, Egypt: May 21, 2006

The G8 Finance Ministers met with the Ministers of Finance of the Broader Middle East and North Africa Region.


Notes

[1] Daily Telegraph (June 5, 2006), "Costello to talk to G8 elite."

[2] RIA Novosti (June 6, 2006), "G8 finance ministers to talk poor-nation energy access June 9-10."

[3] Dow Jones International News (June 6, 2006), "Kudrin: No Risk To Russian Econ From Rising Global Rates."

[4] RIA Novosti (June 6, 2006), "G8 finance ministers to talk poor-nation energy access June 9-10."

[5] RIA Novosti (June 6, 2006), "G8 finance ministers to talk poor-nation energy access June 9-10."

[6] ITAR-TASS World Service (June 5, 2006), "G-8 FinMins to gather in St Pte June 9-10—Kudrin."

[7] Jiji Press English News Service (June 5, 2006), "G-8 Finance Ministers To Address High Energy Prices: Tanigaki."

[8] Jiji Press English News Service (June 5, 2006), "G-8 Finance Ministers To Address High Energy Prices: Tanigaki."

[9] Jiji Press English News Service (June 5, 2006), "G-8 Finance Ministers To Address High Energy Prices: Tanigaki."

[10] Jiji Press English News Service (June 5, 2006), "G-8 Finance Ministers To Address High Energy Prices: Tanigaki."

[11] Jiji Press English News Service (June 5, 2005), "G-8 Finance Ministers to Address High Energy Prices: Tanigaki."

[12] Jiji Press English News Service (June 5, 2005), "G-8 Finance Ministers to Address High Energy Prices: Tanigaki."

[13] Dow Jones Chinese Financial Wire (June 5, 2006), "DJ Tanigaki: G8 To Discuss Energy Prices, Global Econ Impact."

[14] Dow Jones Chinese Financial Wire (June 5, 2006), "DJ Tanigaki: G8 To Discuss Energy Prices, Global Econ Impact."

[15] Jiji Press English News Service (June 5, 2006), "G-8 Finance Ministers to Agree to Promote Financial Education."

[16] Jiji Press English News Service (June 5, 2006), "G-8 Finance Ministers to Agree to Promote Financial Education."

[17] Jiji Press English News Service (June 5, 2006), "G-8 Finance Ministers to Agree to Promote Financial Education."

[18] Jiji Press English News Service (June 5, 2006), "G-8 Finance Ministers to Agree to Promote Financial Education."

[19] Jiji Press English News Service (June 5, 2006), "G-8 Finance Ministers to Agree to Promote Financial Education."

[20] Leika Kihara (June 5, 2006), "PREVIEW: G8 To Discuss Oil, Imbalances; Talks May Hurt Dlr," Dow Jones International News.

[21] Leika Kihara (June 5, 2006), "PREVIEW: G8 To Discuss Oil, Imbalances; Talks May Hurt Dlr," Dow Jones International News.

[22] Leika Kihara (June 5, 2006), "PREVIEW: G8 To Discuss Oil, Imbalances; Talks May Hurt Dlr," Dow Jones International News.

[23] Leika Kihara (June 5, 2006), "PREVIEW: G8 To Discuss Oil, Imbalances; Talks May Hurt Dlr," Dow Jones International News.

[24] Leika Kihara (June 5, 2006), "PREVIEW: G8 To Discuss Oil, Imbalances; Talks May Hurt Dlr," Dow Jones International News.

[25] Agence France Presse (June 5, 2006), "Brown calls for globalisation debate at G8 talks."

[26] Market News International (June 5, 2006), "UK Brown Calls For WTO Progress; EU Liberalisation."

[27] Dow Jones Commodities Service (May 22, 2006), "UK To Press G8 Nations to Boost Education Aid."

[28] RIA Novosti (January 18, 2006), "G8 foreign ministers to meet in Moscow in June."

[29] Market News International (February 8, 2006), "G7 Deputy FinMins to Meet Without Russians in London Thurs-FT."

[30] Agence France Presse (April 16, 2006), "G7 powers to meet as oil prices smash new highs."

[31] Agence France Presse (April 16, 2006), "G7 powers to meet as oil prices smash new highs."

[32] AFX News Limited (April 14, 2006), "G7 finance ministers to discuss oil, rates, yuan ' Japan."

[33] Agence France Presse (April 16, 2006), "G7 powers to meet as oil prices smash new highs."

[34] Agence France Presse (April 16, 2006), "G7 powers to meet as oil prices smash new highs."

[35] Mike Dolan (April 13, 2006), "Analysis ' Growth boom gets G7 off the hook on imbalances," Reuters.

[36] Pavel Kusnetsov and Andrei Sitov (April 21), "Russia to promote G8 summit agenda at Washington meetings," ITAR-TASS World Service.

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G7 Finance Ministers Meeting, Singapore: September 16, 2006

On September 12, 2006, Market News International reported that the G7 finance ministers meeting, which is held as part of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank meetings, will be under the chairmanship of Japan's finance minister, Sadakazu Tanigaki, and held at the Suntec Singapore International Convention and Exhibition Center in the Central Business District.[1] Participants from China, Singapore and Thailand are expected at the meeting.[2]

Global Economic Prospects

The Kyodo News agency's copy of the alleged draft communiqué says that "The United States is moving toward a sustainable growth path."[3] The G7 will also predict continued and accelerated growth in Europe and describe economic recovery in Japan as "more broadly based and well-founded."[4] Dow Jones International News reports that the draft communiqué says the positive G7 economic outlook "is not without potential downside risks [such as] a further increase in energy prices, rise in inflation expectations in some economies, and spread of protectionism."[5] However, the G7 will "remain vigilant of these developments, and are committed to taking appropriate policies to address them as necessary."[6] The Japanese Ministry of Finance stated that they do not have a copy of the aforementioned draft communiqué.[7]

On September 12, 2006, the Dow Jones News Service reported that a Canadian official stated that Canadian finance minister Jim Flaherty is likely to state that the economy is on a balanced growth path.[8]

On September 12, 2006, a Canadian Ministry of Finance official stated that the G7 will release a position the economic prospects of the US and other major countries such as China.[9] The draft communiqué states that "More widely, thanks partly to benign international financial conditions, emerging economies are broadly enjoying robust growth."[10]

On September 12, 2006, Market News International reported that the G7 discussions will focus on oil prices, the world economic outlook, global imbalances, and the reform of international financial institutions.[11]

On September 12, 2006, a Canadian Ministry of Finance official stated that the G7 will discuss "global growth rotation," and that reform in Europe and Japan is no longer as pressing given that "Globally, there is renewed strengthÉ There are signs of broadening demand in Europe and broadly broadly-based growth in Japan."[12]

"As for global imbalances...the consensus among the G7 countries is that economic structural reforms are more important than foreign-exchange rate adjustments," Mizoguchi said. "I don't think there'll be any attempts by Japan, the U.S. and Europe to adjust foreign-exchange rates artificially."

Inflation

On September 12, 2006, Kyodo News reported that it had seen a draft of the communiqué which stated that the G7 calls for vigilance in the face of inflation.[13] The draft communiqué says that the positive G7 economic outlook "is not without potential downside risks [such as] a further increase in energy prices, rise in inflation expectations in some economies, and spread of protectionism."[14] However, the G7 will "remain vigilant of these developments, and are committed to taking appropriate policies to address them as necessary."[15] The Japanese Ministry of Finance stated that they do not have a copy of the aforementioned draft communiqué.[16]

Rising Oil and Energy Prices

The G7 wording on energy prices will state that pricing reflects rising demand and that "We thus encourage investment in exploration, production, transportation and refinery capacity, especially by national companies in producing countriesÉ [we call for] greater energy efficiency, conservation and diversification in large consumers [which will] help ease market pressure in the long run."[17]

Dow Jones International News reported that the G7 finance ministers will voice concern over high oil prices.[18] Market News International reported that in regard to rising oil prices, the draft communiqué states that the G7 will "encourage investment in exploration, production, transportation, and refinery capacity, especially by national companies in producing countries."[19]

On September 12, 2006, Market News International reported that the G7 discussions will focus on oil prices, the world economic outlook, global imbalances, and the reform of international financial institutions.[20]

US Housing Market

On September 12, 2006, the Canadian Ministry of Finance announced that the G7 will discuss the slump in the US housing market and its effect on both American economic prospects and that of the global economy.[21] They will also discuss to what extent that effect might be offset by a strong Asian and European housing market.[22]

IFI Reform

On IMF reform, the Asia Pacific News Agencies report that the G7 will welcome the August 31st agreement to increase voting shares over 2 years for China, South Korea, Mexico and Turkey.[23] The G7 will also ask that Mr. de Rato "carry out necessary work expeditiously, including reaching agreement on the new quota formula by the 2007 Spring Meetings."[24]

On September 12, 2006, Market News International reported that the G7 discussions will focus on oil prices, the world economic outlook, global imbalances, and the reform of international financial institutions.[25]

On September 12, 2006, a Canadian Ministry of Finance official stated that International Monetary Fund (IMF) reform will be discussed. The discussion on IMF reform is expected to approve a plan to increase Chinese, Korean, Mexican and Turkish quotas, and a two-year formula to increase quotas and voting power for other countries.[26]

Foreign Exchange / Global Imbalances

The Organisation of Asia-Pacific News Agencies reports that the draft text dated September 8, does not specifically discuss foreign exchange. Instead, it has "FX" in brackets, which suggests that the ministers are still working on the wording of this section of the document.[27] The document does contain wording to the extent of: "We reaffirm our strong commitment to pursuing sound policies that help narrow external imbalances and call on others to join us to meet the shared responsibility."[28]

Market News International reported that Japanese Finance Minister, Sadakazu Tanigaki, stated that the G7's deliberations on currency will reflect a "common understanding."[29] He went on to say that the G7 does not want to upset the current foreign currency consensus.[30]

Zembei Mizoguchi, who was vice finance minister for international affairs from January 2003 and June 2004, stated that the strength of the euro may be mentioned at the G7 meeting, but that he doubts it will be discussed as a problem that needs to be dealt with.[31] Mizoguchi stated that "As for global imbalances...the consensus among the G7 countries is that economic structural reforms are more important than foreign-exchange rate adjustmentsÉ I don't think there'll be any attempts by Japan, the U.S. and Europe to adjust foreign-exchange rates artificially."[32] Thomas Mirow, German Deputy Finance Minister, is also reported to have stated that the strengthening of the euro against the yen will be discussed.[33]

On September 12, 2006, a Canadian Ministry of Finance official stated that the G7 will discuss the need for enhanced currency flexibility of the yuan, which he stated was "in the interests of China."[34] This discussion may not be part of the official agenda.[35]

Trade

On Doha, the Asia Pacific News Agencies report that the G7 will call for a revival of the World Trade Organization talks, stating that "We stress the importance of advancing multilateral trade liberalization, which is essential to enhancing global growth and reducing povertyÉWe will make utmost efforts towards early resumption of the Doha Round negotiations, and towards effective delivery of aid for trade that helps low-income countries seize new opportunities."[36]

Middle East

On the Middle East, the G7 will commit to long-term stability in the region and welcome commitments from donors for the reconstruction effort in Lebanon.[37] The G7 will also praise the International Compact with Iraq, which is an Iraqi initiative to promote economic and financial sustainability in the country and its integration into the regional and global markets.[38]

Financial Crime

On financial crime, the G7 will call on all countries to help combat terrorist financing and money laundering.[39]

Vaccine Pilot Project

According to the Italian Treasury, the G7 finance ministers will discuss launching a pilot project, called Advanced Market Commitment, to develop a vaccine against pneumococcus (which can trigger pneumonia and meningitis) in developing countries by the end of 2006.[40] A technical discussion on the project occurred in the first week of September, and another will occur in October.[41] The project would guarantee a market for the vaccine, which is not commercially feasible, and the price tag is expected to be between $1.5 and $2 billion for the G8.[42]

Notes

[1] Vicki Schmelzer (September 12, 2006), "Analysts: G7, IMF/World Bank Meetings Loom; Oil a Subject," Market News International.

[2] Vicki Schmelzer (September 12, 2006), "Analysts: G7, IMF/World Bank Meetings Loom; Oil a Subject," Market News International.

[3] Associated Press Newswires (September 12, 2006), "G7 finance chiefs to declare confidence in U.S. economy at Singapore meeting: Kyodo."

[4] Associated Press Newswires (September 12, 2006), "G7 finance chiefs to declare confidence in U.S. economy at Singapore meeting: Kyodo."

[5] Dow Jones International News (September 12, 2006), "G7 Fin Chiefs To Declare Confidence In US Econ-Kyodo."

[6] Dow Jones International News (September 12, 2006), "G7 Fin Chiefs To Declare Confidence In US Econ-Kyodo."

[7] Dow Jones International News (September 12, 2006), "G7 Fin Chiefs To Declare Confidence In US Econ-Kyodo."

[8] Nirmala Menon (September 12, 2006), "Canada Official: G7 To Discuss U.S. Housing Slowdown," Dow Jones News Service.

[9] Courtney Tower (September 12, 2006), "Canada Expects U.S. Housing Mkt, Econ to Be Focus at G7," Market News International.

[10] Organisation of Asia-Pacific News Agencies (September 12, 2006), "G7 vigilant over rising inflation expectations in some economies."

[11] Vicki Schmelzer (September 12, 2006), "Analysts: G7, IMF/World Bank Meetings Loom; Oil a Subject," Market News International.

[12] Courtney Tower (September 12, 2006), "Canada Expects U.S. Housing Mkt, Econ to Be Focus at G7," Market News International.

[13] Agence France Presse (September 12, 2006), "Global financial markets face risk of major correction: IMF."

[14] Dow Jones International News (September 12, 2006), "G7 Fin Chiefs To Declare Confidence In US Econ-Kyodo."

[15] Dow Jones International News (September 12, 2006), "G7 Fin Chiefs To Declare Confidence In US Econ-Kyodo."

[16] Dow Jones International News (September 12, 2006), "G7 Fin Chiefs To Declare Confidence In US Econ-Kyodo."

[17] Organisation of Asia-Pacific News Agencies (September 12, 2006), "G7 vigilant over rising inflation expectations in some economies."

[18] Dow Jones International News (September 12, 2006), "G7 Fin Chiefs To Declare Confidence In US Econ-Kyodo."

[19] Vicki Schmelzer (September 12, 2006), "Analysts: G7, IMF/World Bank Meetings Loom; Oil a Subject," Market News International.

[20] Vicki Schmelzer (September 12, 2006), "Analysts: G7, IMF/World Bank Meetings Loom; Oil a Subject," Market News International.

[21] Courtney Tower (September 12, 2006), "Canada Expects U.S. Housing Mkt, Econ to Be Focus at G7," Market News International.

[22] Courtney Tower (September 12, 2006), "Canada Expects U.S. Housing Mkt, Econ to Be Focus at G7," Market News International.

[23] Organisation of Asia-Pacific News Agencies (September 12, 2006), "G7 vigilant over rising inflation expectations in some economies."

[24] Organisation of Asia-Pacific News Agencies (September 12, 2006), "G7 vigilant over rising inflation expectations in some economies."

[25] Vicki Schmelzer (September 12, 2006), "Analysts: G7, IMF/World Bank Meetings Loom; Oil a Subject," Market News International.

[26] Courtney Tower (September 12, 2006), "Canada Expects U.S. Housing Mkt, Econ to Be Focus at G7," Market News International.

[27] Organisation of Asia-Pacific News Agencies (September 12, 2006), "G7 vigilant over rising inflation expectations in some economies."

[28] Organisation of Asia-Pacific News Agencies (September 12, 2006), "G7 vigilant over rising inflation expectations in some economies."

[29] Vicki Schmelzer (September 12, 2006), "Analysts: G7, IMF/World Bank Meetings Loom; Oil a Subject," Market News International.

[30] Vicki Schmelzer (September 12, 2006), "Analysts: G7, IMF/World Bank Meetings Loom; Oil a Subject," Market News International.

[31] Takashi Nakamichi (September 12, 2006), "Ex-MOF Mizoguchi: G7 Unlikely To See Strong Euro As Risk," Dow Jones International News.

[32] Takashi Nakamichi (September 12, 2006), "Ex-MOF Mizoguchi: G7 Unlikely To See Strong Euro As Risk," Dow Jones International News.

[33] Takashi Nakamichi (September 12, 2006), "Ex-MOF Mizoguchi: G7 Unlikely To See Strong Euro As Risk," Dow Jones International News.

[34] Courtney Tower (September 12, 2006), "Canada Expects U.S. Housing Mkt, Econ to Be Focus at G7," Market News International.

[35] Courtney Tower (September 12, 2006), "Canada Expects U.S. Housing Mkt, Econ to Be Focus at G7," Market News International.

[36] Organisation of Asia-Pacific News Agencies (September 12, 2006), "G7 vigilant over rising inflation expectations in some economies."

[37] Organisation of Asia-Pacific News Agencies (September 12, 2006), "G7 vigilant over rising inflation expectations in some economies."

[38] Organisation of Asia-Pacific News Agencies (September 12, 2006), "G7 vigilant over rising inflation expectations in some economies."

[39] Organisation of Asia-Pacific News Agencies (September 12, 2006), "G7 vigilant over rising inflation expectations in some economies."

[40] Reuters Health E-Line (September 12, 2006), "G8 will discuss vaccine pilot project: Italy."

[41] Reuters Health E-Line (September 12, 2006), "G8 will discuss vaccine pilot project: Italy."

[42] Reuters Health E-Line (September 12, 2006), ÓG8 will discuss vaccine pilot project: Italy."

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Earlier Versions

January 16, 2006
January 23, 2006
January 30, 2006
February 6, 2006
February 16, 2006
June 1, 2006
June 7, 2006


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