Members' Research Service By / October 27, 2021

The 2021 G20 Summit: Bridging global rifts for a greener and more sustainable future

The G20 is an international forum for economic cooperation on key issues on the global economic and financial agenda.

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Written by Ionel Zamfir.

The 2021 G20 Summit, to be held in Rome on 30 and 31 October, was expected to bring together the major economies’ leaders in a physical meeting for the first time since the pandemic began. However, several leaders (of Russia, Japan, Mexico and China) have announced that they will not attend in person, limiting opportunities to hold informal bilateral meetings in the margins of the summit. Important decisions designed to put the global economy and society on course towards a greener and more sustainable future have already been sketched out at ministerial level meetings. These now need to be endorsed by the heads of state or government.

With its informal nature, the G20 is a vital global platform, bringing together the leaders of all the major developed and emerging economies, regardless of their political systems. In a global context characterised by growing rifts between the major geopolitical powers, the US and China in particular, the 2021 summit will be an opportunity to show how committed countries still are to multilateral rules and cooperation, but also how much trust remains to sustain the G20’s customary voluntary commitments.

The leaders at the summit are expected to reaffirm their commitments to boosting economic recovery, while mainstreaming green and digital objectives. They may also discuss more ambitious climate objectives than their ministers have managed to agree. The summit should take the final decision on the historic reform of global taxation, agreeing on a global minimum tax rate for firms operating multinationally. Vaccine equity and other health challenges relating to the pandemic will also figure on the agenda.

For the EU, the summit is an opportunity to reaffirm its unabatedly strong support for multilateralism. The European Parliament has expressed support for the tax reform debated at G20/OECD level.

G20 countries

Read the complete briefing on ‘The 2021 G20 Summit: Bridging global rifts for a greener and more sustainable future‘ in the Think Tank pages of the European Parliament.

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