Upcoming G20 Meetings in Washington to Focus on Boosting Global Growth
Upcoming G20 meetings in Washington to focus on boosting global growth.Reuters

Leaders from the world's prominent economies are expected to discuss how they can boost global growth at this week's G20 meetings in Washington.

The Group of 20 major economies have promised to target a two percentage point increase in the global growth rate over five years and create tens of millions of jobs worldwide.

While geopolitical risks emanating from the Ukraine crisis will be discussed, growth will top the agenda at the meetings, scheduled to begin on 11 April, said Australia's G20 Finance Deputy Barry Sterland.

Australia chairs the bloc of major economies this year and has asked for concrete plans to tackle shortfalls in each member country's policy settings in the second half of 2014.

According to a document prepared for the G20 by European Union finance ministers, reform drafts are inadequate and more ambitious work is needed in areas including investment, employment and competition.

"To build momentum on those growth strategies is really a key goal for this meeting," said Sterland.

"A big focus of this meeting is going to be building on that growth ambition, discussing the sorts of measures that are needed to meet the Sydney growth goal," he told Reuters.

Sterland said there would be a discussion of the "full range" of geopolitical risks, but said that Ukraine had already been an issue at the previous G20, and there was no plan for joint action against Russia.

"That sort of theme would not be on the agenda for this meeting," Sterland added.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has pegged global growth at 3.6% for 2014 but has warned of geopolitical risks amid a standoff between Russia and the West over Ukraine.

Russia, also a G20 member, has been hit with EU and US sanctions after it took control of Ukraine's Crimea region.

Six weeks ago, at the Sydney meeting, G20 finance ministers and central bank governors announced their target to add $2tn (£1.2tn, €1.5tn) to the global economy over five years, in line with the recent recovery after the financial crisis.

The G20 economies represent about 85% of the global economy.