Experts Propose Options for Aligning Financial System with 2030 Agenda
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The 'Think 20' group under Argentina's G20 presidency released a paper that calls on the G20 to advance the 2030 Agenda through its role in shaping international cooperation in economic and financial practice and policy.

The report presents four options for the G20 to align the financial system architecture with sustainable development and climate considerations.

August 2018: Experts from the UN and Brookings Institution have authored a paper on aligning the financial system architecture with sustainable development. The report calls for a broader strategy to achieve this goal, and considers ways in which the Group of 20 (G20) could advance such a strategy. The paper was released by the ‘T20’ (Think 20) under Argentina’s G20 presidency.

The paper titled, ‘2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development: Aligning financial system architecture and innovation with sustainable development,’ asserts that despite some progress, today’s financial system is not sufficient to underpin sustainable development. Barriers to securing adequate public and private financing to support SDG implementation include competing demands, high levels of indebtedness, corruption, illicit financial flows (IFFs) and tax evasion, ineffective assessments of sustainability related risks and opportunities and perverse incentives that lead to short-termism.

The report’s authors – Simon Zadek, UN, and Homi Kharas, Brookings Institution – call on the G20 to advance the 2030 Agenda through its central role in shaping international cooperation in economic and financial practice and policy, and recall that G20 leaders have committed to further aligning the Group’s work with the 2030 Agenda.

The paper presents the following four proposals for consideration by the G20:

  • Integration of the 2030 Agenda into the governance of the financial system, including acceptance that the financial system should aim to ensure strong, sustainable, balanced and inclusive growth over the long-term.
  • Improving the impact of the development finance community, including through enhanced collaboration among development finance institutions. The report suggests such institutions scale up their impact and mobilize private financing on “an unprecedented scale.”
  • Improving alignment of the financial system architecture with the 2030 Agenda, such as by promoting national action and international cooperation in managing the international financial system and the monetary system needed to take into account the 2030 Agenda. Adjustments could include requiring that measures, such as financial market standards, be subjected to publically available assessments of potential impacts on climate and sustainable development goals or applying performance assessment methodologies to climate and the 2030 Agenda.
  • Harnessing the digitalization of finance for the 2030 Agenda. This proposal suggests advancing sustainable digital finance and aligning the digitalization of finance with the 2030 Agenda as it evolves, including through consideration of climate and the environment.

The T20 summit will take place from 16-18 September 2018. The T20 aims to facilitate interaction between G20 members, the public policy community and the general public, in order to “add value to the G20 process with evidence-based public policy proposals on areas of interest for the international agenda.” [Publication: 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development: Aligning financial system architecture and innovation with sustainable development] [G20 Argentina 2018 Website] [T20 Webpage]


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