Global macroeconomic impacts of food and energy insecurity, climate change, and transition pathways are some of the key issues to be discussed by the Second G20 Framework Working Group (FWG) of the Finance Track meeting, which will be held in Chennai on Friday and Saturday. The meeting is being held under India’s G20 Presidency.

The city in February hosted the first G20 Education Working Group.

The objective

V Anantha Nageswaran, Chief Economic Advisor, Ministry of Finance, who is co-chair of the FWG along with Clare Lombardelli, Chief Economic Advisor, UK Treasury, told media that the meeting would focus on sharing policy experiences of different countries on macroeconomic issues.

The meeting will deliberate on how international policy cooperation can be enhanced to achieve strong, sustainable, balanced, and inclusive growth across the G20 nations, he said.

The first meeting of the FWG was held in December in Bengaluru, and since then, significant progress has been made on the priorities and deliverables. Some of the goals that the Indian G20 Presidency is pursuing for the framework include international economic cooperation to address the macroeconomic impact of food and energy security; climate change; and climate and energy pathways.

The second meeting of the FWG will further advance these issues and provide an opportunity to learn from countries’ experiences, he said.

Subsequently, the meeting will dwell on how the discussions can inform the G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors, who will be meeting in Washington, D.C., on April 12–13, 2023, he said.

Over 80 delegates from G20 member countries, invitee countries, and various international and regional organisations will participate in this meeting, he added.

As a prelude to the FWG meeting, the Reserve Bank of India has also been arranging events to make G20 discussions more inclusive and people-centric starting March 16, he said.

Progress so far

To a query on the progress made between December and now, Nageswaran replied that every working group has a certain set of deliverables.

Most of the deliberations have been on sharing the experiences among the member countries, and progress has been made in conducting these surveys, collating the experiences, sharing them with countries, and also coming out with expert groups and panel discussions on the current challenges and opportunities on issues like food and energy, inflation, climate change and transition pathways, he said.

India’s stance

Asked if India will put forth its own suggestions or issues at the G20 FWG meeting, Nageswaran said, “As a presidency, we are supposed to stay neutral and facilitate an exchange of views among the participants. As a G20 member country, we have participated in the food and energy security survey or the climate survey.”

“Our job is to facilitate the right panel of experts and multiple points of view coming across. Our role is to facilitate the dialogues, bring in different points of view, and create a platform for healthy and constructive discussion leading to potential approaches and solutions. These are not binding on nations; they are only recommendations, and countries can choose what suits their context,” he said.