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Analysis and Comment (46)

Australia is unlikely to gain the support needed from other G20 countries to block Russia attending the G20. Australia is unlikely to gain the support needed from other G20 countries to block Russia attending the G20. AAP Image/NewZulu/Hugh Peterswald

Who in the G20 is (not) afraid of the big bad Russian wolf?

The downing of Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 has considerably increased the strain on the relationship between Russia and the European Union and United States on the other side. Following the escalation…
Australia has improved its global innovation ranking - but future budget could put this progress at risk. Australia has improved its global innovation ranking - but future budget could put this progress at risk. Image sourced from www.shutterstock.com

Australia ranks on innovation – but indolence could cost us

This year’s news on Australia’s global innovation ranking could be a lot worse, and probably will be in the future if the Federal Government gets its way with proposed budget cuts to our already inadequate…
News Corp Chairman Rupert Murdoch joined Alexander Shokhin, President of the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs, and Business Council of Australia President Catherine Livingstone at the B20 summit this week. News Corp Chairman Rupert Murdoch joined Alexander Shokhin, President of the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs, and Business Council of Australia President Catherine Livingstone at the B20 summit this week. Jason Reed/AAP/Reuters

The B20 summit: where cashed-up lobbyists meet to write trade rules?

The Business 20 (B20) summit typically attracts the global corporate glitterati, as the usual suspects assemble in alpine retreats like Davos; cinema-infused beach towns like Cannes; or sunny Mexican resorts…
The B20 and G20 agendas are both focused on economic growth, but Prime Minister Tony Abbott wants to avoid linking climate policy to the agenda. The B20 and G20 agendas are both focused on economic growth, but Prime Minister Tony Abbott wants to avoid linking climate policy to the agenda. Aman Sharma/AAP

Abbott stands alone on climate policy and economic growth

In a speech delivered at ANU in April last year, then shadow environment minister Greg Hunt looked toward Australia’s host role for the G20 during 2014. Regarding climate policy he said Australia should…
Business leaders would prefer to align job skills with labour shortages. Business leaders would prefer to align job skills with labour shortages. Image sourced from www.shutterstock.com

The B20, job creation and the importance of being human

The B20 business leaders meeting this week in advance of November’s G20 summit play an important role in advising on what to do about those intractable global issues of economic growth and job creation…
Public anger over the recent federal budget blindsided big business who advised government on its key measures. Public anger over the recent federal budget blindsided big business who advised government on its key measures. AAP/Courtney Fry

Policy clout or fading power: can B20 really deliver?

Many who study or comment on contemporary business and politics equate corporate leadership with the ability to influence events in a coherent or knowledgeable way. The usual narrative is that CEOs of…
Brisbane is set to benefit from November’s G20 summit, but more work is required to boost international travel flows. Brisbane is set to benefit from November’s G20 summit, but more work is required to boost international travel flows. LJ Mears/Flickr

Hosting a World Cup is nice, but the G20 could prove more lucrative

When the powerful gather for the G20 summit in Brisbane this November, the core mandate is to discuss measures to support global economic growth, including trade liberalisation, investment and infrastructure…
G20 countries - including Australia - could improve their whistleblower protections. G20 countries - including Australia - could improve their whistleblower protections. Image sourced from www.shutterstock.com

G20 still has a way to go with whistleblower protections

The G20 countries' whistleblower protection laws fail to meet best international standards, according to the first independent evaluation of both public and private sector whistleblowing laws. This is…
What role can civil society organisations have on the agenda of the G20, which Australia is president of this year? What role can civil society organisations have on the agenda of the G20, which Australia is president of this year? AAP/Dan Himbrechts

Australian civil society and the C20: now isn’t the time to be polite

One of the many preparatory events leading up to the G20 Leaders Summit in Australia later this year is the C20 Summit, which will begin in Melbourne on Thursday. The C20 – or Civil Society 20 – aims to…
While Australia takes centre stage as this year’s G20 host, some of Joe Hockey’s budget policies are on the group’s ideological fringes. While Australia takes centre stage as this year’s G20 host, some of Joe Hockey’s budget policies are on the group’s ideological fringes. AAP/Daniel Munoz

As G20 host, our welfare policy is exposed to an unflattering light

Australia is hosting the G20 this year and showcasing to the world its approach to welfare policy: deny young people income support for up to six months and instead make more food vouchers available. This…
The G20 has agreed on new rules to combat offshore tax evasion. The G20 has agreed on new rules to combat offshore tax evasion. Jason Reed/AAP

Australia can’t stop multinational profit shifting in isolation

When Business Council of Australia chief Jennifer Westacott weighed in on plans for an Australian tax crackdown on multinationals last week, she warned the move could risk competitiveness and lead to companies…
OECD data shows some of the most vulnerable in society suffered disproportionately after the last financial crisis. OECD data shows some of the most vulnerable in society suffered disproportionately after the last financial crisis. Dan Himbrechts/AAP

Why the federal budget should get a ‘fail’ from the G20

Everybody would agree that growth, defined as a steady increase in gross domestic product, is a necessary condition for economic development. There is simply no country that has reduced poverty and improved…
US multinationals, through a network of lobby groups, are pushing back against attempts to reform international corporate taxation. US multinationals, through a network of lobby groups, are pushing back against attempts to reform international corporate taxation. EPA/Michael Reynolds

G20 tax reform mired in shadowy world of lobbying

Researchers estimate the US loses more than US$90 billion annually in corporate income tax revenues from tax loopholes and tax havens, also known as base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS). With a growing…
Will the global community definitively stigmatise Russia as an international pariah until it renounces the use of force to challenge a UN member’s territorial integrity? Will the global community definitively stigmatise Russia as an international pariah until it renounces the use of force to challenge a UN member’s territorial integrity? EPA/Alexey Nikolsky

What can Australia and the global community do about Russia?

The international community has been impotent since Russia responded to the November 2013 Ukraine crisis with force, culminating in annexation of the Ukrainian territory of Crimea this month. The G7’s…
Australian Treasurer Joe Hockey hosting the recent G20 finance ministers' meeting in Sydney, a lead-up event to November’s Brisbane Summit. Australian Treasurer Joe Hockey hosting the recent G20 finance ministers' meeting in Sydney, a lead-up event to November’s Brisbane Summit. AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts

Double or nothing: Australia’s G20 energy challenge

When Australia hosts the G20 Leaders' Summit in November, a top agenda item for its “Brisbane Action Plan” will be “practical actions to improve productivity and competitiveness”. So here’s a good place…
A seat at the table: gender equality should be tackled if the G20 want to hit 2% growth targets. A seat at the table: gender equality should be tackled if the G20 want to hit 2% growth targets. AAP

Time for the G20 to invest in gender equality

IMF chief Christine Lagarde left Sydney commenting that the “two genders” will have to contribute if the G20 was to achieve its aim of lifting economic growth targets by 2%. Critiques of that growth target…
The G20 is made up of several tiers, not all of whom share priorities. The G20 is made up of several tiers, not all of whom share priorities. AAP

Can worldwide economic growth be ‘planned’?

G20 finance ministers and central bank governors have set themselves a formidable task in accelerating growth and creating millions of new jobs in order to add 2% to world economic growth over the next…
The G20 leaders agree more must be done to address tax avoidance, but the multinationals they’re targeting could be having the last laugh. The G20 leaders agree more must be done to address tax avoidance, but the multinationals they’re targeting could be having the last laugh. William West/AAP

Multinationals unfazed by G20 tax crackdown

The G20 finance ministers have once again agreed to cooperate to counter aggressive cross-border tax avoidance by multinationals. Many US firms are using tax avoidance schemes for their non-US earnings…
The G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors Meeting concluded with a growth ‘aim’ of 2% above current projections over five years. The G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors Meeting concluded with a growth ‘aim’ of 2% above current projections over five years. AAP/Jason Reed

G20 finance ministers agree to growth target: experts react

The G20 finance ministers, who have been meeting in Sydney this weekend, say economic grow is still below the rate needed to get people back into jobs. In a statement released at the conclusion of talks…
G20 nations should fly the flag for the rest of the world when it comes to boosting infrastructure investment. G20 nations should fly the flag for the rest of the world when it comes to boosting infrastructure investment. Flickr/DowningStreet

Boosting infrastructure investment can prove G20’s value to the world

As G20 finance ministers and central bank chiefs prepare to meet in Sydney this weekend, leading corporate figures known as the B20 will meet separately with major global investors to discuss the need…
Treasurer Joe Hockey wants the G20 Finance Ministers to agree to hard economic growth targets, but not everyone is on the same page. Treasurer Joe Hockey wants the G20 Finance Ministers to agree to hard economic growth targets, but not everyone is on the same page. Daniel Munoz/AAP

Hockey’s G20 growth targets can’t be one size fits all

Treasurer Joe Hockey this week revealed plans to push for quantitative economic growth targets from the G20 Finance Ministers, who are meeting in Sydney this weekend. But it’s unclear whether this mission…
The fragile five economies have become surrogates for the developing world in meetings like the G20. The fragile five economies have become surrogates for the developing world in meetings like the G20. Shutterstock

Explainer: the G20 and the fragile five

Financial markets love to come up with snappy acronyms – you have all heard of BRICS, but there are many others, with the “fragile five” being the latest. The BIITS - Brazil, India, Indonesia, South Africa…
Last year’s G-20 knees up. This year expect the taper, the IMF and corporate tax evasion to be the main themes. Last year’s G-20 knees up. This year expect the taper, the IMF and corporate tax evasion to be the main themes. Flickr

We are all spillovers now: G20 finance meeting explained

Finance ministers and central bank governors from the Group of 20 major economies will meet in Sydney this week. A lot of troubled financial waters have flowed under the bridge since this group last met…
Josh Frydenberg believes the government has an ambitious agenda for the G20. Josh Frydenberg believes the government has an ambitious agenda for the G20. AAP/Alan Porritt

In Conversation with Josh Frydenberg: “G20 will carry our domestic message abroad”

Finance ministers from the G20 countries gather in Sydney this weekend, a crucial step on the way to November’s Leaders meeting, which will be the most important gathering of world leaders Australia has…
Josh Frydenberg is confident that there will be concrete outcomes from the G20 meeting. Josh Frydenberg is confident that there will be concrete outcomes from the G20 meeting. AAP/Dominic O'Brien

In Conversation: Josh Frydenberg full transcript

Michelle Grattan: Australia will host the G20 leaders meeting late this year. It will be the most important international conference we have ever had in this country. This week, the G20 finance ministers…
Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s free market, small government leaning overlooks the real issue of social inequality. Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s free market, small government leaning overlooks the real issue of social inequality. Lukas Coch/AAP

Why Abbott can’t delete ‘society’ from his economic growth script

Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s address to the World Economic Forum in January delivered a plain, pragmatic message. The best remedy for the uneven recovery of the world economy, according to Abbott, is a…
Tony Abbott’s small government message played well to a WEF audience. Tony Abbott’s small government message played well to a WEF audience. AAP

Abbott’s message to the world: governments should stand back

As widely anticipated, prime minister Tony Abbott’s speech to the World Economic forum (WEF) stressed the absolute centrality of the private sector as an engine of economic growth. Outlining Australia’s…
Finishing touches go on at the World Economic Forum, where Tony Abbott will outline his G20 agenda. Finishing touches go on at the World Economic Forum, where Tony Abbott will outline his G20 agenda. AAP

Davos diplomacy: Abbott sells G20 Summit to world leaders

When prime minister Tony Abbott delivers his speech outlining “Australia’s Vision for the G20” at the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland on Thursday, he will have the attention of some of…
Profit shifting by multinationals will be a key focus of the G20 under Australia’s presidency this year. Profit shifting by multinationals will be a key focus of the G20 under Australia’s presidency this year. AAP

The G20 and the taxing issue of making big business pay

Australia has officially commenced its presidency of the G20 and preparations are underway for the November 2014 Summit, when the leaders of the world’s biggest economies will meet in Brisbane. The G20…
Debt; dollar; deficit - the mantra for this year, amid a turbulent political period. Debt; dollar; deficit - the mantra for this year, amid a turbulent political period. AAP

2013, the year that was: Business and Economy

Debt. Dollar. Deficits. Three little words so close to the hearts of our contributors in a year dominated by a critical federal election, a waning mining boom and continuing international turbulence. The…
Tony Abbott has announced his priorities for the G20 in Brisbane next year. Tony Abbott has announced his priorities for the G20 in Brisbane next year. AAP

Delivering growth but protecting economies: our G20 conundrum

With Russia handing the G20 host baton to Australia this month, and combined with our UN Security Council seat, the biggest year of Australian diplomacy begins. Prime Minister Tony Abbott had a backdrop…
Hands up if you’re running a country. Hands up if you’re running a country. Europeancouncil

Pride and prejudice as curtain comes down on the G20

Last orders at the G20 Summit and the press narrative here solidified around “the grumpy summit” and “economic agenda hijacked by Syria” headlines. A Russian official may or may not have alleged the UK…
Tax loopholes have cost Tanzania billions. Tax loopholes have cost Tanzania billions. David Parry/PA

For G20 leaders, poverty is a taxing issue

The G20 has been dominated by Syria, tax reform, and playground infighting among world leaders. But where is the talk of ending hunger, eradicating diseases or cancelling debts? Back in 2005, as the G8…
Blue sky thinking in St Petersburg. Blue sky thinking in St Petersburg. victorgrigas

Powerful and plural G20 is worth listening to

The G20 Summit brings together in St Petersburg, Russia a remarkably diverse and powerful collection of states. It is a unique experiment in global governance, signalling the end of dominance by a few…
The 2013 G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governor’s Meeting in Moscow resulted in a global roadmap to help combat corporate tax evasion. The 2013 G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governor’s Meeting in Moscow resulted in a global roadmap to help combat corporate tax evasion. AAP

What does the G20 actually do?

Presumably, you have now read all about what on earth the G20 is, and you care deeply. But what does it actually do? The aim of the G20 is clear. The 2009 G20 Framework for Strong, Sustainable, and Balanced…
Crisis talks: Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and Treasurer Wayne Swan at the G20 Summit in Pittsburgh, September 2009. Crisis talks: Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and Treasurer Wayne Swan at the G20 Summit in Pittsburgh, September 2009.

FactCheck: did Kevin Rudd help create the G20?

“I think people are all excited about the fact that when the G20 is hosted in Australia next year, the G20 Finance [Ministers] will be meeting here in Cairns in far north Queensland… of course, that exists…
Kevin Rudd continues to be coy about the election date. Kevin Rudd continues to be coy about the election date. AAP/Dave Hunt

Rudd says he wants to go to G20

Kevin Rudd has raised new uncertainty over the election timetable by saying his intention is to be in St Petersburg for the G20 and declaring that he has not settled on an election date. The PM had been…
The survival of Pacific Island tax havens depends on a bigger struggle between the Global North and the Global South. The survival of Pacific Island tax havens depends on a bigger struggle between the Global North and the Global South. Shutterstock

Pacific Islands shine light on larger tax-haven fight

The role of offshore tax havens have come under increasing fire amid growing global concern over tax revenues, with a calls for greater transparency from the recent G8 summit and the recommendation of…
Australia has embraced clean technology, but if we want to make a big difference we should free up clean tech trade. Australia has embraced clean technology, but if we want to make a big difference we should free up clean tech trade. Espen Klem

Want a big idea? Let’s lead the world and free up clean tech trade

In 2014, Australia will host the G20 Summit. The Prime Minister’s Office has been canvassing privately for a Big Idea to present, something to take the green debate forward and put Australia’s stamp on…
On the hunt for rogue internet cafes. On the hunt for rogue internet cafes. Niall Carson/PA

Is it really worth bugging? A guide to the G8

So what’s so special about this lot? Who decides which countries get to be in the gang? Can you get kicked out? How does it stack up against the G20? If spies were to listen in, would they hear anything…
Changes in the environment will be easier to automatically detect using new 3D mapping technology. Changes in the environment will be easier to automatically detect using new 3D mapping technology. JasonDGreat

Scanning for suspicious packages just got easier

Suspicious packages and public spaces go together like, well, like suspicious packages and public spaces. Sadly, they’re something we all know about, get warned about and, increasingly, have to worry about…
New Zealand Prime Minister John Key and Julia Gillard are at loggerheads over the investment chapter of the Trans-Pacific Partnership. New Zealand Prime Minister John Key and Julia Gillard are at loggerheads over the investment chapter of the Trans-Pacific Partnership. AAP

A dangerous investment: Australia, New Zealand and the Trans-Pacific Partnership

This week, San Diego is hosting the latest round of talks over the Trans-Pacific Partnership. Australia and New Zealand are at loggerheads over this secretive new trade treaty spanning the Pacific Rim…
President Obama and French leader Nicolas Sarkozy were caught speaking of Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in unflattering terms at the G20 summit. President Obama and French leader Nicolas Sarkozy were caught speaking of Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in unflattering terms at the G20 summit. AAP/Stefan Rousseau

Careless whisper: what Obama and Sarkozy’s slip means for Israel

The recent Cannes G20 meeting was ostensibly about saving Europe from falling into economic oblivion. But a frank exchange between US President Barack Obama and French President Nicolas Sarkozy, caught…
G20 ministers failed to deliver tangible outcomes to offset food price volatility. G20 ministers failed to deliver tangible outcomes to offset food price volatility. AAP

Much talk but little action from G20 agriculture ministers

Food policy experts hoping for tangible outcomes to address an escalating food crisis among developing countries have been disappointed by the outcomes of last week’s first-ever meeting of G20 agriculture…

Research and News (3)