The G20 Trade & Investment Working Group advances its agenda in Buenos Aires

With unanimous support for the agenda proposed by the Argentine Presidency, the meeting of the G20 Trade & Investment Working Group (TIWG) concluded on 8 May in Buenos Aires with positive outcomes, after making progress in the debates on how to make international trade and investment benefit ever more people, favouring growth, development and job creation, as well as addressing the recent developments in international trade.

The First Meeting of the G20 Trade and Investment Working Group under the Argentine Presidency was held on 7-8 May in Buenos Aires. Attended by representatives from the 20 member countries, guests and international organizations, the meeting focused on how to achieve more inclusive international trade which improves people's quality of life.

The opening address was delivered by the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Worship, Ambassador Jorge Faurie, and the Minister of Production, Francisco Cabrera. Working sessions were presided over by the Secretary for International Economic Relations, Ambassador Horacio Reyser, who is the 2018 Chair of the Group.

In his address, the Foreign Minister stated that "as the main forum for international economic cooperation, the G20 should continue to promote international trade and investment." He further stated that "at this critical juncture for the global economy and trade, it is important that we reaffirm the G20's key role in enhancing cooperation."

Minister Cabrera stated that "Argentina firmly believes that trade and investment are drivers of growth, productivity, innovation, job creation and development.” He added that "as the presiding country of the G20, we have to take advantage of trade and investment, especially in a context of strengthened global economic growth."

In this context, the Argentine G20 presidency decided to continue, in 2018, the work of the Trade and Investment Working Group, which was created in 2015 and held its first meeting in 2016 under the Chinese Presidency, with the aim of contributing to the G20's efforts for recovering the rates of growth and employment affected by the 2008-2009 crisis.

Under the slogan “Building consensus for fair and sustainable development,” the Argentine G20 Presidency proposed addressing issues of great importance at the global and regional levels, which are also of interest to developing countries and in line with the Presidency's general priorities on the future of work, infrastructure for development and a sustainable food future. These issues, whose inclusion on the agenda was approved at the meeting, are the following: i) aspects related to trade and investment of Global Value Chains in agri-food; ii) aspects related to trade and investment of the New Industrial Revolution and iii) the G20 dialogue on current developments in international trade.

As regards the first two issues, the members identified concrete actions to improve countries' insertion into global value chains in agri-food and to address the challenges and take advantage of the opportunities created by new technologies.

Special emphasis was placed on the special needs of developing countries, MSMEs and women, with a view to enhancing their insertion into the global economy. This will contribute to taking better advantage of the benefits of globalization, without leaving anyone behind and promoting the elimination of hunger and poverty, in line with the UN’s 2030 Agenda.

In addition, a dialogue was opened to address the current situation of global trade and its imbalances. There was a common understanding by the G20 to promote exchanges aimed at seeking joint and collaborative solutions to global economy issues.

All in all, the meeting had positive outcomes to advance the priorities proposed by the Presidency and outline the next steps regarding the Second Meeting of the Group, to be held on 12-13 September in Mar del Plata, Province of Buenos Aires.

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