India will attempt to build consensus on an international framework for automatic sharing of information to check tax evasion during the forthcoming G-20 Summit in Australia, at a time when the government has stepped up efforts to bring back money stashed away illegally abroad.
New Delhi, which received $71 billion in remittances last year from Indians overseas, will also make a strong case for cutting costs in transferring money to India. The country is the largest recipient of remittances in the world, followed by China with $60 billion remitted in 2013.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be in Brisbane on November 15-16 for the summit where the world’s 20 major economies will discuss crucial issues such as firing up growth rates, infrastructure development, energy, climate change and reforming international institutions.Modi’s sherpa for the summit Suresh Prabhu said on Thursday the creation of a "proper database" that can be shared automatically would make transactions more transparent and help check tax evasion. A sherpa is a senior official responsible for preparing the agenda for leaders to consider during the summit.
Flagging concern over high cost of sending money to India, Prabhu said in some countries Indians were charged up to 10% of the value of such remittances. He said reducing the cost of remittances to less than 5% was a priority for India.
Prabhu said India would also use the G-20 platform to press for reforming global institutions such as the IMF and making them "more democratic".
India will also push for strong collective action on climate change at the summit, ahead of crucial negotiations on the complicated issue in Peru in December.
The main economic issue at the summit would be how to increase global growth by at least two percentage points over the next five years. He said India’s contribution to achieve the target would be significant. “China’s economy is slowing down. Our growth will be higher than theirs in 18 months,” Prabhu said.