The third G20 Framework Working Group (FWG) meeting, in which around 100 financial and economic policy mandarins will be brainstorming on the state of global economy, kicks off in Varanasi on Tuesday. The two-day meeting, that will take place under the G20 German presidency, is being co-hosted by the ministry of finance and the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). The meet in Varanasi will see discussions on the current global economic conjecture as well as deliberations on the policy options that countries can pursue to counter the challenges. One important focus of this meeting will be to deliberate on the inclusive growth agenda of G20 and formulate a framework that will enable countries to help frame country specific inclusive growth policies.
Besides delegates from the 19 G20 member countries, officials from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), World Bank, ILO, OECD, European Central Bank, UNCTAD, European Commission, Financial Stability Board and the Asian Development Bank will also be present at the high-profile gathering.
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Economic affairs secretary Shaktikanta Das will inaugurate the meeting as chief guest, while Dinesh Sharma, special secretary in the finance ministry, will head the programme.
For Varanasi, which had recently been billed one of the 10 dirtiest cities in the country, this high-profile event would in a way be an occasion to showcase the success of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Swachh Bharat Mission. Talking to FE, Varanasi district magistrate Yogeshwar Ram Mishra said the administration is confident that the city will successfully pull off this important event.
At the end of the two-day meeting, the visiting delegates are also slated to take a tour of the world-famous city and watch the Ganga aarti.
Since the inception of the FWG in 2009, this is the fourth occasion that India is hosting this meeting. Previously, India had hosted the G20 FWG meeting in Neemrana (2012 under Mexican presidency), Goa (in 2014 under G20 Australian presidency) and in Kerala (2015 under G20 Turkish presidency).
The first two FWG meetings under the G20 German presidency were held at Berlin in December 2016 and at Riyadh in February 2017.
The fourth and the last G20 FWG meeting under the G-20 German presidency is likely to be held in Argentina before the G20 leaders’ summit in July 17 in Hamburg, Germany.
The G20 members include India, Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, South Korea, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Turkey, the UK, the US and the European Union (EU).