India to raise issue of fugitives at G20
Abe also referred to Modi’s initiative on fugitive economic offenders at earlier G20 meetings and said the grouping “should deal with this problem as part of anti-corruption measures”, Gokhale said.Updated: Jun 28, 2019 00:11 IST
The global economy, world trade, data flows, climate change and action against economic offenders are expected to be among the issues taken up at the G20 Summit beginning in Osaka on Friday. India will seek support for a post-disaster recovery coalition that it plans to launch this year.
The focus areas of the two-day summit of the world’s 20 largest advanced and emerging economies were outlined by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe during a bilateral meeting with his Indian counterpart, Narendra Modi, on Thursday.
Foreign secretary Vijay Gokhale told a media briefing in Osaka that Abe had spoken about focussing on the global economy, finding appropriate situations for global trade and data flows, and coming up with a constructive message on climate change.
Abe also referred to Modi’s initiative on fugitive economic offenders at earlier G20 meetings and said the grouping “should deal with this problem as part of anti-corruption measures”, Gokhale said.
The world economy has been buffeted by the US-China trade war. New Delhi’s strong strategic relations have been affected by growing differences on trade-related issues, including the ending of the US waiver on sanctions on Iranian oil imports, ending of export benefits under the Generalised System of Preferences programme and US opposition to Indian efforts to protect the private information of Indian consumers through data localisation. The Centre has also made action against fugitive economic offenders such as Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi a priority.
Gokhale quoted Abe as saying that he was hoping to get the support and understanding of G20 members, including India, on these key issues. During the meeting, Modi sought Japan’s support for a new initiative – the Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure – that India intends to launch this year.
Gokhale explained this will be a “loose, virtual coalition of countries which have capacity in handling post-disaster infrastructure development”, including financial capacity, human resources and experience.
“The thinking behind this is that every time a major disaster occurs, immediate relief and rehabilitation is given, and thereafter small, vulnerable and developing countries are left to fend for themselves,” he said.
Modi believes such capacities across the world should be linked so that the leadership of any disaster-affected country “knows whom to go to and how to access help,” he added.
Before Abe visits India later this year for an annual bilateral summit, India and Japan will hold their inaugural 2+2 meeting of their foreign and defence ministers. Abe and Modi also reviewed bilateral ties and discussed the timely completion of the Mumbai-Ahmedabad high speed railway corridor and a convention centre in Varanasi.