G20 calls for greater commitment to ensure global growth

The Group of Twenty (G20) on Monday vowed to reduce global economic risks and secure a durable and strong recovery in a timely manner, said a statement published in Mexico City on Monday.

G20 finance ministers and central bank governors gathered in Mexico City on Sunday and Monday to discuss a wide range of issues, with the sluggish economy in the United States and the ongoing European debt crisis on top of their agenda.

“Current reform momentum in the European Union on structural, fiscal and financial fields needs to be continued with the view to improving competitiveness and promoting financial stability,” said the body in a final communique.

The statement said that the G20 members were happy with the results seen in Europe, which has been implementing a series of economic reforms to stabilize and better supervise its banking system in the face of debt crises in Portugal, Ireland, Italy, Greece and Spain.

The statement also addressed concerns about the so-called “fiscal cliff” in the U.S.– a package of spending cuts and tax increases set to become effective next January if the nation’s legislators can not reach an agreement on how to reduce debt in the medium term.

The U.S. Congressional Budget Office, a legislative research unit, estimated that the package would trigger a 1.3-percent decline in the U.S. economy during the first six months of next year.

The statement also called on nations to expedite their payments to the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) planned global stability fund worth 461 billion U.S. dollars.

The IMF is seeking to help nations that follow its rules and recommendations better defend themselves against speculative attacks and continue with sensible policies in the face of global downturn.

The G20 is also committed to fighting money laundering by drug cartels and terrorists, and creating a more stable and transparent banking system.

The conference was the last major event chaired by Mexico before the country hands over the G20 presidency to Russia.

G20 groups Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Britain, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, Turkey, the United States as well as the European Union.

Xinhua