Europe admits G-20 economies will miss extra growth target

European Union finance ministers admitted on April 8 that the world's 20 biggest economies (G-20) will miss their target of generating additional economic growth through reforms by 2018 and called for reflection on why they have failed.

G-20 economies agreed in 2014 to boost growth in their economies by at least an additional 2 percent over 5 years through reforms, adding more than $2 trillion to the global economy and creating millions of jobs.

"It seems likely that we will not reach our 2-in-5 growth ambition by 2018," said a terms of reference document approved by EU finance ministers for the next G-20 financial leaders meeting on April 20-21 in Washington.

"We should reflect on the appropriate communication around our 2-in-5 objective and build a shared assessment and understanding of why we have not fully delivered," said the document, obtained by Reuters.

"It is thus vital to accelerate the implementation of structural reforms and of investment in productive infrastructure," it said.

EU delegations to G-20 meeting in Washington will also reiterate that the G-20 "should avoid all forms of protectionism, support the Paris agreement on climate change, the work on green finance, and the multilateral approach to taxation and to financial regulation," the document showed.

The declaration, while standard in previous G-20 meetings and communiques, has become problematic since Donald Trump became the president of the United States last year.

At a meeting in March in the German town of Baden Baden, G-20 finance ministers dropped a pledge to keep global trade free and open, yielding to an increasingly protectionist United States.

Breaking a decade-long tradition of endorsing open trade, the G-20 made...

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