With host ICC India, the G20 CEO Advisory Group held a global policy consultation during the ICC Asia Pacific CEO Forum on 7 March 2013 in New Delhi, India.
The event is part of a series of meetings the ICC G20 CEO Advisory Group has held since June 2011. Global consultations give local businesses the opportunity to be heard and to channel their priorities into the G20 process.
The New Delhi G20 consultation provided senior business leaders from India and the Asia-Pacific region with an opportunity to add input into the G20 policy agenda, principally in the areas of trade, investment and infrastructure. Participants strongly suggested that G20 leaders provide support for trade and open markets to stimulate growth, support a global agreement on investment and work with business to ensure financial regulations do not become barriers to trade and investment.
The global consultation was hosted by Mr Raghu Mody, Immediate Past President, ICC India & Chairman of the Business Task Force, ICC Asia Pacific CEO Forum.
Mr Mody was joined by special guests: Harsh Pati Singhania, Chairman, ICC India; Dr Victor Fung, ICC Honorary Chairman and Group Chairman, Li & Fung Group; Terry McGraw, ICC Vice Chairman and CEO, McGraw Hill Companies; Dr Alok Sheel, Secretary, Prime Minister Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance; Y.K. Modi, Chairman and CEO, Great Eastern Energy Corp Ltd and Past President, ICC India; and Jean-Guy Carrier, Secretary General, ICC.
Results from the New Delhi global consultation gave businesses in the region the opportunity to help shape ICC 's policy recommendations for input into the G20 process. For 2013 the process will be orchestrated by Alexander Shokhin, President of the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs (RSPP), who has been appointed by Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Key outcomes from the policy discussion are as follows:
- There is a need to place trade liberalization at the top of the G20 agenda. While the Russian government has placed a strong emphasis on trade for the 2013 G20 cycle, there is a need for business to advocate a number of concrete measures to promote jobs and growth. In particular a focus on delivering a comprehensive trade facilitation agreement at the WTO Bali Minsiterial in December 2013 would be a strong signal to the global economy.
- In addition to the trade facilitation agreement, G20 governments should also: a) remove agricultural subsidies, b) monitor the rising protectionism in standardization and technical barriers to trade, c) ensure regional and preferential trade agreements are compatible with multilateralism, d) provide capacity building for business in developing markets and, e) explore altering the methodology on how trade is measured.
- The Russian G20 cycle is an opportunity to promote a multilateral agreement on investment and provide a stable and predictable investment environment to continue to generate employment and wealth creation.
- G20 leaders should make infrastructure development and productivity a top priority, particularly by improving and enabling long-term investment into infrastructure.
- Four key areas for the G20 on information technology and communication (ICT) include: a) the need to drive investment in ICTs, b) data protection, c) enhanced training for information technology, d) public-private partnerships.
Views from the G20 Sherpa
The G20 has shifted from "crisis" mode at its origins to increasing its attention in areas such as trade, infrastructure, green growth and food security. Business has become an important partner in this process via the Business-20, which facilitates the depth of public-private dialogue on key issues on the agenda. Issues slated for the 2013 agenda include: the ongoing Eurozone crisis, US political issues, weakness in the financial system, and sovereign borrowing and private debt - austerity vs. growth.
"We are very pleased that the CEO Forum has given diverse voices from Asia and the Pacific region the opportunity to be heard and to be relevant to the global policy debates that ultimately impact their commercial opportunities, investments and trade."
Victor K Fung, ICC Honorary
Chairman and Chairman, Li & Fung Group
"The member companies of ICC are the everyday practitioners of the global economy and, consequently, have a clear stake in the success of the G20. Business leaders at the Forum received a first-hand assessment of the evolving business opportunities in one of the fastest growing regions of the world."
Harsh Pati Singhania, President, ICC
India and Managing Director, JK Paper
"The results from this policy consultation will be conveyed to the respective B20 task force leaders in Moscow so as to ensure that business recommendations reflect the broad base of companies large and small in all regions of the world."
Harold McGraw III, ICC Vice-Chairman
and CEO, The McGraw-Hill Companies