For ministers, the fight against climate change should become an economic policy priority.
The G7 finance ministers, gathered under the auspices of the United Kingdom, on Friday called for a “green and sustainable” global recovery and for making the fight against climate change a priority in economic policies.
This meeting took place roughly due to the coronavirus pandemic. Next week, the G7 finance ministers will meet in person in London for a two-day meeting, with this time the proposed international corporate tax minimum is expected to take center stage.
“It was great to talk to my G7 counterparts about the steps we need to take to move towards our ambitious climate goals,” Treasury Secretary Rishi Sunak said in a statement.
He also called for ensuring that global financial markets play their role in transitioning to carbon neutrality, including “improving climate-related financial reporting and developing international financial accounting standards that take into account” the carbon footprint.
“We had important discussions about economic recovery, fighting climate change, digital payments,” said Paschal Donohue, Irish Finance Minister and Chairman of the Eurogroup, in a statement.
He added, “We are living in an exceptional period and we need a high level of coordination at the European and international levels to ensure a coherent economic response to the Covid-19 epidemic.”
The United Kingdom currently holds the rotating presidency of the Group of Seven most industrialized countries (Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States).
Next week’s meeting is expected to focus largely on the Biden administration’s plan to impose an international corporate tax of at least 15%.
A consensus is emerging among the G7 countries. Ireland, which has one of the lowest corporate tax rates in the world, opposed it.
The UK is pushing to add a minimum corporate tax rate to a reform that would require multinational corporations to pay their taxes where they generate their sales and not just where they are registered.
And a spokesperson remarkably pointed out earlier this week that the fact that “reaching an agreement on how to tax large digital companies” such as Google, Apple or Facebook “is a priority for the advisor.”
“Our position remains that wherever taxes are paid it matters and any deal must ensure that digital companies pay UK taxes that reflect their economic activity.”