G-20 wants all nations to sign Convention on money laundering


To combat money laundering and financing of terrorism, the G-20 Finance Ministers has called upon all nations to sign the global convention for comprehensive exchange of information.

"We call upon all countries to join the Global Forum on transparency and to sign on the Multilateral Convention on Mutual Assistance...to combat money laundering and the financing of terrorism and proliferation of weapons of mass destruction," said the communique issued after G-20 meeting of Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors in Washington on Saturday.

G-20 is a grouping of rich and developing countries. The Multilateral Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance facilitates sharing of tax information among the member countries.

India for long has been pressing for automatic exchange of information among the countries to deal with the menace of money laundering and terror financing.

"India believes that Automatic Exchange of Information is one of the most effective ways to improve voluntary tax compliance and decrease tax evasion and there is a need to make it obligatory," Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee had earlier said at the ministerial meeting.

The G-20 also supported the renewal of the mandate of Financial Action Task Force (FATF), which is an inter- governmental body formed to frame policies to combat money laundering and terror financing.

The Communique said protecting investment was crucial for the global recovery and reaffirmed commitment to avoid protectionism.

It said the growth expectations for 2012 remain moderate on the back of constrained consumption and investment growth and volatility in financial markets.

The recent economic developments point to the continuation of a modest global recovery followed by some significant policy action, the Communique said, adding that the risk to global economic growth has started to recede.

"High levels of public and private indebtedness, the need for structural reforms, insufficient global rebalancing, and persistent unemployment and development gaps continue to weigh on medium-term global growth prospects," it said.

In the context of high unemployment and indebtedness in many countries, Communique said "supporting growth and job creation, structural reforms, restoring medium-term fiscal sustainability and promoting global rebalancing remain at the core of our commitments".

It said: "We remain committed to take the necessary actions to secure global financial stability. This effort... shows the commitment of the international community to safeguard global financial stability and put the global economic recovery on a sounder footing."

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