2020 G20 Recommendations for Promoting Innovation, Digital Technologies, and Trade

Global industry welcomes the renewed discussions at the G20 in 2020 on the role of digital technologies in promoting economic growth through cross-border innovation and trade.

G20 2019 was a groundbreaking year for the advancement of global digital policy discussions. Under Japan’s leadership, the G20 launched the Osaka Track to accelerate and support the ongoing digital trade discussions at the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and created the concept of Data Free Flows with Trust (DFFT) in recognition of the fact that open cross-border data flows are the lifeblood of all industries, and that strong protections for privacy and cybersecurity go hand-in-hand with the transparent, non-discriminatory transfer of data across borders. G20 2020 offers governments the opportunity to advance this work towards an open, inclusive vision of the modern global economy.

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At a time when global uncertainty is at a high and governments are grappling with responding to an ongoing pandemic, the G20 is among the most appropriate convening bodies to build the international consensus between the key players necessary to mitigate the near- and long-term negative impacts of the current public health crisis. We applaud its recent commitments to continue to realise a free, fair, non-discriminatory, transparent, predictable and stable trade and investment environment, and to keep markets open. Together with industry, the G20 should continue to encourage the open markets and accelerated technology adoption that will drive groundbreaking innovations and creative solutions, including those that directly contribute to the economic and public health response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This will require reaffirmed commitments to reject protectionism, support rules- based multilateral organisations, best practices, processes, and obligations, embrace transparency in legislative and regulatory actions, and invest in the workforce. Such commitments should be taken with a view to prioritizing the enhancement and generation of business opportunities for micro, small, and medium size enterprises (MSMEs) and continued advancement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as a means of ensuring inclusive recovery across economies.

To achieve these goals, global industry respectfully provides the following recommendations for G20 governments as they continue to meet throughout 2020.

Together with industry, the G20 should continue to encourage the open markets and accelerated technology adoption that will drive ground-breaking innovations and creative solutions, including those that directly contribute to the economic and public health response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This will require reaffirmed commitments to reject protectionism, support rules-based multilateral organisations, best practices, processes, and obligations, embrace transparency in legislative and regulatory actions, and invest in the workforce.”

 

The global industry groups made the following recommendations to governments:
  1. Reaffirm commitment to free, fair, non-discriminatory, transparent, predictable and stable trade and investment environments, and keep markets open.
  2. Commit to facilitating the development of new technologies.
  3. Adopt clear and consistent guidance on essential workers that includes ICT workers.
  4. Strengthen their commitment to facilitate the free flow of data across borders.
  5. Adopt and maintain strong privacy protections.
  6. Ensure the availability of multiple transparent, non-discriminatory legal mechanisms for the cross-border transfer of personal data.
  7. Allow the cross-border movement of personal and non-personal data.
  8. Develop efficient, innovative, and rights respecting mechanisms for issuing and responding to cross-border requests for digital information.
  9. Enhance cybersecurity by using risk-based approaches grounded in global, consensus-based, industry-led standards and best practices.
  10. Negotiate trade agreements that promote digital trade and include robust obligations in respect of data that reflect global consensus frameworks.
  11. Support the WTO Joint Statement Initiative on E-Commerce.
  12. Provide technical assistance and capacity building tools to enable developing economies to pursue appropriate data governance policies and practices.
  13. Commit to achieving a multilateral solution to the taxation challenges arising from the digitalisation of the global economy.
  14. Ensure non-discriminatory treatment of digital products.
  15. Make permanent the WTO Moratorium on customs duties on electronic transmissions.

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