OECD says new deal will help fight tax avoidance

Robyn Ryan
May 14, 2017

The head of International Monetary Fund, Christine Lagarde, has previously said that one of the biggest risks facing the global economy is "the sword of protectionism hanging over global trade".

Speaking on Friday on the sidelines of the gathering of finance ministers and central bank governors in Bari, the official said there was a consensus not to veer from the message delivered by the G20 in Baden Baden two months ago.

G7 finance ministers and representatives of central banks met in Bari, Italy, on Friday and Saturday.

The Associated Press reports, "Mnuchin says major trading partners "are much more comfortable" with the Trump administration's stance on trade and tax policy and understand that they will benefit from the intended USA growth".

It also said the G7 financial leaders would strengthen cooperation to counter cyber threats such as a global online attack which infected tens of thousands of computers in almost 100 countries on Friday.

Steven Mnuchin's third encounter with the worldwide community, at a meeting of finance chiefs in Italy, deepened ties even as his government's "America First" policy continues to challenge the global economic consensus.

Finance ministers signaled a truce in their trade quarrel with Donald Trump's administration as his Treasury Secretary said the Group of Seven is starting to understand where he's coming from.

Italian finance minister Pier Carlo Padoan, who hosts this year's G7 meeting, said the discussions, which had been scheduled previous to Friday's cyberattack, were "unfortunately very timely", Reuters reported. Mnuchin tweeted only that he enjoyed his discussion with Morneau.

The Italian hosts say the meeting themes will include making economic growth benefit more people; coordination among global financial organizations such as the worldwide Monetary Fund and the World Bank; and efforts to stop companies from dodging taxes by moving income across borders.

The U.S. Treasury Secretary's first G-7 outing came in the wake of an announcement a deal to boost the country's exports of gas and beef to China. Under the administration of Donald Trump, the U.S. are feeling disadvantaged in global trade, not least due to other major currencies being undervalued compared to the dollar and unfavourable trade deals that the U.S. had signed up to in the past 25 years.

Among the issues officially on the table are transnational tax evasion, including the policing of web-based multinationals, combating the financing of terrorism, defending financial institutions from cyber attacks and how to ensure that the benefits of growth are more evenly shared.

A "Bari Policy Agenda" signed at the meeting would provide an overall framework within which the G7 governments would try to foster a more inclusive growth through such tools.

The meeting, which will continue into Saturday, is the first Group of Seven (G7) outing for Steven Mnuchin, Trump's Treasury Secretary and a former Goldman Sachs banker tasked with delivering the U.S. economic agenda.

Other reports by VideoGamingPros

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