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NK Singh, Summers to steer G20 panel on multilateral banks


New Delhi: A nine-member G20 expert group has been set up to suggest ways to strengthen multilateral development banks (MDBs) like the World Bank, and it has been given time till June 30 to come out with its report.

Former US treasury secretary Larry Summers and the chairman of India’s 15th Finance Commission NK Singh will co-chair the group’s deliberations, according to a finance ministry statement.

The group, set up during India’s G20 presidency, will firm up a roadmap for an “updated” MDB ecosystem for the 21st century, according to the statement.

The move is aimed at improving the ability of such institutions to fund a wide range of sustainable development goals and global challenges, including climate change and health-related issues.

The other members of the group are Tharman Shanmugarathnam, senior minister of Singapore; Maria Ramos, former director-general of the National Treasury of South Africa; Arminio Fraga, former governor of the Central Bank of Brazil; Nicholas Stern, IG Patel Professor of Economics and Government at London School of Economics; Justin Yifu Lin, former senior vice president and chief economist of the World Bank; Rachel Kyte, former vice president of World Bank; and Vera Songwe, former executive secretary at the Economic Commission for Africa.

The decision to set up the group was made last month at the meeting of the finance ministers and central bank governors of the G20 nations in Bengaluru.

India has time and again pitched for reforming the MDBs, saying they must be better equipped to address challenges of the 21st century. Last month, in his message for the last month’s G20 meeting in Bengaluru, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had called for bolstering MDBs so that they can address challenges such as climate change and high debt levels in many poor and developing countries.


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