Relationships with International Groups and Organizations

The Minister of Finance has a wide range of international responsibilities with respect to international trade, finance and development. The Minister of Finance is responsible for Canada's import policy and legislation, including the Canadian International Trade Tribunal, as well as certain areas of Canada's export-oriented financial Crown Corporations. In addition, the Minister of Finance is the Canadian Governor for the World Bank Group, the International Monetary Fund, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank.

In addition, the Minister of Finance is called upon to attend a range of international meetings of Finance Ministers, including the G7, G20, the OECD, APEC, Regional Finance Ministers of the Americas, and the Commonwealth.

There are also issues on which the Department regularly engages with the Minister of Finance in support of Canada's effective engagement international matters, including international trade and finance. Prominent among these is the joint management (with the Ministers of Foreign Affairs and International Development) of Canada's International Assistance Envelope. In addition, the China-Canada Strategic Economic Dialogue, international climate finance and managing ongoing and potential new macro financial assistance loans are current priorities. With respect to international trade, there are issues concerning ongoing global trade frictions, including with the U.S. on steel and aluminum.

Group of Twenty (G20)

The Group of Twenty was established in 1999 as a forum for dialogue among economic policy makers from key industrialized countries and "systemically important" emerging markets. Members include the G7, Argentina, Australia, Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, Turkey, and the European Union. Meetings of the G20 are also supported by the participation of international organizations, such as the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the World Bank and the Financial Stability Board (FSB).

The G20 gained additional prominence in 2008 when the U.S. convened the first G20 Leaders' Summit in response to the global financial crisis. In the Finance Ministers' Track, the G20 covers a range of issues, including promoting global economic growth, financial stability and reform of the international financial architecture. The chair rotates annually among the members. Japan holds the chairmanship of the G20 in 2019 and Saudi Arabia will take on this role in 2020.

Relationship to Minister

The Minister generally attends Summits and Finance Ministers' and Central Bank Governors' Meetings. Finance Ministers' and Central Bank Governors will hold stand-alone meetings in Saudi Arabia in February and July , and will convene on the margins of the IMF/World Bank Spring and Annual Meetings in Washington in April and October. Saudi Arabia will host the 2020 Leaders' Summit on November 21-22.

Relationship to Department

Canada's G20 Deputy is Rob Stewart, Associate Deputy Minister, who accompanies the Minister to Ministerial meetings. G20 Deputies typically meet on the margins of ministerial meetings, and hold stand-alone meetings of their own. Both the Minister of Finance and the Deputy usually attend the annual G20 Leaders' Summit along with the Prime Minister. Several seminars, workshops and working group meetings involving mid-level officials are also typically held each year. Finance Canada also provides support to the "G20 Sherpa", the Prime Minister's personal representative for the G20, typically a Deputy Head-level official at Global Affairs Canada (GAC). This position is currently held by Jonathan Fried.

Significance

In 2009, Leaders designated the G20 the premier forum for global economic cooperation. Its annual Summit endorses decisions and policies in a number of areas including financial sector regulation, tax, international financial architecture, and macroeconomic policy. Canada hosted two G20 Finance Ministers Meetings in 1999 and 2002, and a G20 Summit in Toronto in 2010. Canada is eligible to host again in 2025.

Group of Seven (G7)

The G7 comprises the seven largest advanced economies: the US, Japan, Germany, France, the UK, Italy, and Canada. With the emergence of the G20 as the main forum for global economic policy coordination, Canada introduced changes to the G7 Finance Ministers' process during its Chairmanship in 2010, refocusing the group towards a forum for frank discussion by like-minded major industrialised countries. Communiqués, previously an important feature of the G7, are now only issued as needed. G7 Finance Ministers generally only meet formally once a year, although they often meet informally on the margins of G20 meetings to discuss issues and coordinate positions.

G7 Leaders meet on an annual basis. Unlike the G20, Finance Ministers and Deputies do not generally attend G7 Leaders' Summits, given the focus on security and development. G7 Finance Ministers generally meet a few weeks prior to G7 Leaders Summits, to finalize finance issues.

France is host of the G7 in 2019, and is carrying forward many of the priorities identified by Canada during its G7 Presidency in 2018, most notably gender equality issues and achieving growth that works for everyone. This year's official G7 Finance Ministerial meeting took place on July 17-18 in Chantilly, France, while the G7 Leaders Summit was held on August 24-26 in Biarritz, France. The U.S. will take over the G7 Presidency in 2020 and we expect to learn more about their expected priorities in the coming weeks.

Relationship to Department

The G7 Finance Deputies work program is fluid and wide-ranging, reflecting current events in the global economy, including developments in individual countries, ongoing multilateral efforts to strengthen the international financial architecture, and the schedule of ministerial and other meetings. The Department plays a strong role in preparing Canada's Deputy and Minister of Finance ahead of G7 meetings and conference calls.

Significance

While Canada supports maintaining the G20 as the premier forum for international economic cooperation, the G7 continues to serve a useful purpose. The G7 Finance Ministers track has become more of a forum for frank and informal policy discussions on world economic issues among a small group of like-minded countries. It can also serve as an important forum to develop common positions on issues discussed at the G20.

International Monetary Fund (IMF)

Relationship to Minister

The Minister of Finance is Canada's Governor at the IMF and is responsible for the management of Canadian interests at the Fund. The Minister exercises influence on IMF issues by voting on resolutions presented to the IMF Board of Governors, through interventions at the spring and fall Annual meetings of the International Monetary and Finance Committee (IMFC), his plenary statements at the IMF/World Bank Annual and Spring Meetings, and periodic meetings with the Managing Director of the Fund. The Minister also exercises influence through our Executive Director at the Fund's Executive Board, where the majority of decisions are taken. The Governor of the Bank of Canada is Canada's Alternate Governor of the IMF.

Relationship to Department

The Department of Finance co-ordinates Canadian policy advice on IMF issues and Canada's operational interests at the IMF. Every year, the Department prepares an annual report on the operations of the IMF (and World Bank Group) delivered to Parliament and the public by the Minister of Finance. The Department also participates in the IMF's annual Article IV consultation with Canada. Article IV consultations are part of the IMF's surveillance mandate and consist of annual assessments of a country's economic policies and prospects.

The management of Canada's interests in the ongoing work of the IMF is the responsibility of the Executive Director, Ms. Louise Levonian, Canada's representative on the Executive Board. Ms. Levonian is one of 24 Executive Directors. In addition to Canada, she represents 11 other countries (Ireland and 10 Caribbean countries), the twelve countries forming a constituency at the Executive Board. The Minister of Finance nominates Canada's Executive Director, with the approval of the Prime Minister (given that the position is usually staffed at the Deputy Minister level), and the nominee is then formally elected by the constituency.

Significance

The IMF is the central multilateral institution in the international financial system. Its role is to promote a sound global financial system and broad-based economic growth through surveillance, policy advice and the provision of conditional financial assistance to countries experiencing unsustainable external imbalances and related economic difficulties.

The IMF works like a credit union. Upon joining and subject to regular reviews, each member of the IMF is assigned a quota, based broadly on its relative weight and integration in the world economy. The IMF has a large pool of liquid assets which it makes available to help members finance temporary balance of payments problems. The IMF's resources are provided by its members primarily through their payment of quotas and temporary lending arrangements. A country's quota in turns helps determine the amount of Fund resources that it may use should it experience economic difficulties. Canada's quota is currently about SDR 11 billion ($20.5 billion).

Canada also has bilateral loan arrangements with the IMF where it stands ready to provide additional resources in times of heightened global economic uncertainty. Canada's commitments to the New Arrangements to Borrow (NAB) total SDR 3.9 billion ($7.2 billion). Canada has also extended a time-bound temporary note purchase agreement with the Fund through 2020, which allows the IMF to access a further SDR 8.2 billion ($15.2 billion) in the event of a large-scale global systemic shock. Taken together with quota, Canada's total financial commitments to the IMF total SDR 23 billion ($43 billion). Any funds provided to the IMF constitute a financial asset of the Government and are booked as official international reserves.

Canada also contributes to the IMF's Poverty Reduction and Growth Trust (PRGT), which provides financial support on concessional terms to low-income countries facing protracted balance of payments problems. In January 2017, Canada finalized a new SDR 500 million (about $925 million) loan agreement to help ensure the IMF has sufficient resources to support its poorest members through the mid-2020s.

Canada's current objectives for the IMF are: 1) Work with the IMF to promote the benefits of economic and financial integration, rules-based multilateralism and technological progress as means to facilitate economic growth and prosperity that benefit everyone; 2) Support IMF surveillance activities, with a particular focus on identifying macroeconomic vulnerabilities and improving transparency on distortive policies (e.g., governance and corruption issues, exchange rates, debt operations and capital flow measures); 3) Support efforts to strengthen the IMF's lending toolkit, with a particular focus on improving resiliency among the poorest and/or most vulnerable members, and enhance coordination among the Fund and other institutions that safeguard global economic and financial stability; 4) Support IMF efforts to deliver effective technical assistance and capacity development, emphasizing the importance of women's economic empowerment, and the need to strengthen member countries' implementation capacity; and, 5) Play a constructive role in ongoing Fund efforts to review its resource needs, and strengthen its governance and accountability structures in order to foster a more representative, inclusive and effective institution.

Kristalina Georgieva succeeded Christine Lagarde as Managing Director of the IMF on October 1, 2019.

World Bank Group

Relationship to Minister

The Minister of Finance is Canada's Governor on the Board of Governors of the World Bank Group. The Deputy Minister of International Development at GAC is Canada's Alternate Governor at the World Bank Group.

Most decisions are delegated to a resident Board of Executive Directors. However, as Governor, the Minister of Finance usually attends both the spring and annual (fall) meetings of the World Bank Group, which are jointly held with the IMF. Governors discuss key policy issues in the joint Development Committee of the World Bank Group and IMF, which convenes during the spring and annual meetings. The Minister and the Deputy Minister of International Development generally attend for discussion on development issues.

Relationship to Department

The Department of Finance coordinates Canadian policy advice on World Bank Group issues and Canada's operational interests in the World Bank Group. The Department of Finance consults with GAC on all issues relating to the World Bank Group.

The management of Canada's interests in the World Bank Group are the responsibility of the Executive Director, Canada's representative on the Executive Board. The position is currently vacant and the Alternate Executive Director (currently from Guyana) is in charge until a new Executive Director takes office. There are 25 Executive Directors, who meet regularly to consider policy issues and individual World Bank Group projects. In addition to Canada, the Canadian Executive Director represents 12 other countries (Ireland and 11 Commonwealth Caribbean countries), with Canada and these other countries forming one constituency at the Executive Board.

The Minister of Finance nominates Canada's Executive Director with the approval of the Prime Minister (given that the position is usually staffed at the Deputy Minister level), and the nominee is then formally elected by the constituency.

Significance

The World Bank Group is owned by 189 of the world's sovereign governments and is driven by poverty reduction and shared prosperity objectives. The World Bank Group provides loans, equity investments, grants, guarantees and technical assistance to developing country governments and private sector entities in pursuit of its objective of poverty reduction. The World Bank Group is the world's largest official source of development financing. The World Bank Group is led by President David Malpass, who was appointed for a five-year term in beginning on April 9, 2019.

The World Bank Group consists of five entities. The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) and the International Development Association (IDA) together form the World Bank. The IBRD provides non-concessional financing and technical assistance to the governments of middle-income borrowing countries, while IDA provides concessional (interest-free) loans and grants to the governments of the world's poorest countries. The International Finance Corporation (IFC) is the Bank Group's private sector arm that provides financing to private companies on commercial terms. The Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA) promotes private foreign investment in developing countries through the provision of guarantees and other insurance against non-commercial risk. The fifth entity, the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID), provides conciliation and arbitration services for international investment disputes.

Canada makes annual contributions of $442 million to replenish IDA. Replenishment negotiations occur on a three-year cycle, with Canada's most recent three-year IDA commitment amounting to US$1.3  billion, the sixth largest contribution. This 18th replenishment, known as IDA18, reflected Canadian proposals to use innovative financial solutions to generate more support for development with resources provided by donors. Canada's strong focus on the poorest and most vulnerable countries and on promoting gender equality were also prominently reflected in the outcome of the negotiations. Negotiations for the 19th replenishment are ongoing and are expected to end in December 2019.

Canada also makes periodic commitments to recapitalize the IBRD. As of March 31, 2019, Canada had subscribed to US$8.5  billion (approximately 3%) of IBRD's capital, including US$1.5 billion to complete a capital increase negotiated in 2018. This 2018 capital increase was the first such increase since 2010. At that time, Canada was one of the shareholders that endorsed boosting the Bank's capital by more than US$58  billion, in response to a G20 commitment to ensure that the multilateral development banks had sufficient resources to play a role in overcoming the financial crisis. Of Canada's subscribed capital, US$620 million has been paid in cash, with the remainder being guaranteed in the event the IBRD is not able to pay its creditors.

European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD)

Relationship to Minister

The Minister of Finance is Canada's Governor to the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. Each of the Bank's 71 shareholders is represented on the Board of Governors, the Bank's highest decision-making body.

Governors meet annually, usually in May. The Minister of Finance does not generally attend this meeting and in the past has designated a Minister of State or a senior Departmental official to represent Canada. At the annual meeting, Governors (or their designates) typically make a short oral intervention outlining their views on the operations and priorities of the Bank. The May 2019 meeting was held in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Katharine Rechico, Assistant Deputy Minister of the International Trade and Finance Branch, represented Canada.

Relationship to Department

The Department of Finance co-ordinates Canadian policy advice on EBRD issues and Canada's operational interests in the EBRD. The management of Canada's interests in the ongoing work of the EBRD is the responsibility of Douglas Nevison, Canada's representative on the Board of Directors. Mr. Nevison is one of 23 Directors.

In addition to Canada, he represents Morocco, Jordan, and Tunisia, with the four countries forming one constituency at the Board of Directors. The Minister of Finance nominates Canada's Director, who is then formally approved by the constituency. Mr. Nevison's term will end in June 2020.

Significance

The EBRD's mandate is to invest in financially viable projects that promote the transition to a market-oriented economy in the countries of Central and Eastern Europe, the former Soviet Union, and the Southern and Eastern Mediterranean region that respect the principles of multiparty democracy, pluralism, and market economics. Through its investments, the Bank contributes to continued economic reform in the region and improved integration with the world economy. The EBRD is led by Sir Suma Chakrabarti, who was re-elected for a second term as President of the EBRD on May 11, 2016, for a four-year term. The election of a new President will take place at the 2020 Annual Meeting in London.

Following a capital increase in May 2010 of €10 billion (or 50%) to provide the EBRD with the resources for counter-cyclical lending in their countries of operations, the EBRD's total authorized capital stands at €30 billion (about C$44 billion). Canada has subscribed to 3.45 per cent – or €1.02 billion (about C$1.5 billion) of the Bank's capital – of which about 20 per cent is paid-in capital, with the remaining subscription consisting of callable shares.

The EBRD's mandate and operations have evolved considerably in recent years. The Bank's operations have expanded to South-Eastern Europe, Central Asia and Turkey, which presents greater operational challenges and financial risks compared to Central and Eastern Europe. A more pronounced shift occurred following the upheaval in the Middle East and North African and has expanded operations of the EBRD into the Southern and Eastern Mediterranean (SEMED), a region that encompasses all of the countries along the southern and eastern shoreline of the Mediterranean Sea, as well as Jordan, Lebanon and the West Bank and Gaza.

Supporting the development of Ukraine is a priority for Canada at the EBRD, given its great transition needs. Canada is a strong advocate for this region and has supported Ukraine by providing dedicated resources, and encouraging EBRD investments that facilitate political and economic transition in Ukraine. In view of Russia's illegal annexation of Crimea and its actions in eastern Ukraine, Canada and other G7 countries opposed EBRD lending to new Russian projects since 2014. Given that Russia was the EBRD's largest recipient country, this issue has been of high significance to the Bank.

The EBRD is in the process of developing its Strategic and Capital Framework, which will define the high-level strategic orientations for the Bank's operations over the period 2020-25, and assess the capital requirements needed to pursue the priorities. At the 2019 Annual Meeting in Sarajevo, EBRD Governors asked Management to:

  1. Explore options to scale up and strengthen delivery within its existing countries of operations, while advancing transition and providing additionality;
  2. Prepare for engagement with potential new countries of operations in the SEMED region;
  3. Evaluate whether the Bank should hold an additional crisis buffer of capital to respond to unanticipated financial events;
  4. Analyze potential options for expanding the Bank's geographical scope (e.g., Sub-Saharan Africa, Iraq); and
  5. Examine potential options for a return of capital to shareholders through redemption of any surplus capital identified.

The Strategic and Capital Framework 2020-25 will be finalized and submitted to the Board of Governors for approval in 2020.

Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB)

Relationship to Minister

The Minister of Finance is Canada's Governor to the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB). Each of the Bank's 74 shareholders is represented on the Board of Governors, the Bank's highest decision-making body.

Governors meet annually, usually in June. The Minister of Finance does not generally attend this meeting and in the past has designated a senior Departmental official to represent Canada. At the annual meeting, Governors (or their designates) typically make a short oral intervention outlining their views on the operations and priorities of the Bank. The July 2019 meeting washeld in Luxembourg and Katharine Rechico, Assistant Deputy Minister of the International Trade and Finance Branch, led the Canadian delegation.

Periodically, Governors are required to make decisions, largely on pro-forma matters such as approving financial statements and approving membership of new countries. The department will provide briefing notes ahead of such instances.

Relationship to Department

The Department of Finance co-ordinates Canadian policy advice on AIIB issues and Canada's operational interests in the Bank. The management of Canada's interests in the ongoing work of the AIIB is the responsibility of Canada's Executive Director, one of 12 non-resident Directors.

In addition to Canada, the Executive Director represents Egypt, Ethiopia and Madagascar, with the four countries forming one constituency at the Board of Directors. The Minister of Finance nominates Canada's Director (a position usually staffed at the Associate Assistant Deputy Minister level), and the nominee is then formally approved by the constituency. Such a nomination will be required to replace Canada's first Executive Director to the AIIB, who has recently left the Department of Finance.

Significance

Established in January 2016 and based in Beijing, the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) is a multilateral development bank focused on infrastructure financing in Asia. China was the principal driver in creating the AIIB, which was seen in part as a response to their dissatisfaction, and that of India and other emerging economies, with the slow pace of reform to the voting powers of existing institutions within the Bretton Woods international financial architecture.

Canada joined the AIIB in March 2018. Other members of the AIIB include Australia, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, South Korea and the UK. The US and Japan have not joined the AIIB. There has been considerable political discourse within Canada over the merits of membership; the official opposition of the 42nd Canadian Parliament focused on the AIIB in the context of Canada's broader strategy on China and publicly called for Canada's withdrawal from the institution.

World Trade Organization (WTO)

Relationship to Minister

Primary responsibility for Canada's participation in the World Trade Organisation (WTO), including attendance at Ministerial meetings, rests with the Minister of International Trade Diversification. However, as statutory responsibility for Canada's import policy (including the Customs Tariff and the Special Import Measures Act) and the financial services industry rests with the Minister of Finance, and given a shared responsibility with the Ministers of International Trade Diversification and Innovation, Science and Economic Development for investment policy, *portion of sentence redacted*

Relationship to Department

The Department plays a lead role, in close consultation with other interested departments and agencies, in the negotiation and implementation of tariff and trade rules, including commitments at the WTO and the current negotiations on fisheries subsidies. As well, in the context of its economic advisory responsibilities, the Department plays an active role in the co-ordination and management of Canada's broader participation in WTO activities, including the resolution of trade disputes (e.g., softwood lumber) as well as efforts to reform the WTO.

Significance

The World Trade Organisation (WTO) was established as part of the results of the Uruguay Round (1994) of multilateral trade negotiations to succeed the GATT. It is the main global international organisation governing trade between nations. At its heart are a number of agreements that set out the ground rules for national policies bearing on trade in goods and services. Such agreements cover, inter alia, tariff commitments, agricultural trade, and the use of trade remedies such as anti-dumping and countervailing measures, trade in services and intellectual property rights. The WTO currently has 164 members and its decisions, including the launch and conclusion of negotiations, are made by consensus. Rights and obligations established in the various WTO agreements are enforced through a binding dispute settlement process, which aims to ensure that Members keep their trade policies within the agreed limits. *Paragraph redacted*

Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD)

Relationship to Minister

The OECD holds an annual Ministerial Council Meeting (MCM) for Finance and Trade Ministers in the spring of each year. The increased focus of the G20 and other international groups on macroeconomic and financial stability issues and the busy international meeting schedule has led to the Minister of State (Finance) or Parliamentary Secretary (Finance) representing the Finance Minister at the MCM in recent years.

Relationship to Department

Global Affairs Canada is the lead department for Canada's participation at the OECD. Reflecting its responsibilities, the Department of Finance leads in certain committees, related to economic, financial and fiscal affairs. They include: the Economic and Development Review Committee (EDRC – which conducts peer reviews of member and certain non-member countries' economies); the Working Party No.3, Working Party No.1, Working Party on Short-Term Economic Prospects, and Economic Policy Committee (WP3, WP1, STEP and EPC - which examine monetary, fiscal and structural policy issues as well as country forecasts); the Committee on Fiscal Affairs (CFA - which covers different tax policy and administration issues under its various working parties); the Committee on Financial Markets (CFM – which focuses on financial developments); the Committee on Insurance and Private Pensions and several financial sector working parties covering debt management, financial consumer protection, long-term financing, and financial literacy. Finance also leads on budgeting and expenditure issues through the Working Party of Senior Budget Officials.

The Department of Finance also leads Canada's participation in the OECD Working Party on Export Credits and Credit Guarantees, and the Participants to the Arrangement on Officially Supported Export Credits. These forums are responsible for a set of agreements that establish rules according to which OECD-based export credit agencies (such as Export Development Canada) provide government-backed export financing, as well as guidelines on topics such as environmental and social due diligence standards.

The EDRC Survey of Canada, which occurs every 18-24 months, is coordinated by Finance. The next survey will be published in May or June 2018.

The Department of Finance is represented at the Canadian Delegation to the OECD by a Finance Counsellor. Finance officials take the lead in other committee meetings.

Significance

The OECD committees in which Finance leads or monitors are doing useful work in a number of areas, particularly with respect to the interlinkages of macroeconomic and structural policy analysis. The OECD has a comparative advantage over other institutions in structural policy analysis. It is the leading body responsible for developing global norms in the international tax area, with significant influence on the content and interpretation of bilateral tax treaties and guidance on transfer pricing. The OECD-led Inclusive Framework on Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) has a broad membership of over 130 jurisdictions, which are cooperating to implement standards designed to address aggressive tax avoidance by multinational enterprises, and discussing changes to global norms in response to the tax challenges of digitalization. In addition, the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes, whose membership similarly extends well beyond OECD members, is tasked with monitoring the implementation of the OECD standards on exchange of information, in support of the fight against international tax evasion.

With respect to the macroeconomic analytical work conducted by the OECD, the Department sees some scope for a re-orientation of activities away from short-term analysis that is often replicated by other international institutions towards longer-term structural issues in which the OECD has a comparative advantage.

Over the past several years, OECD members have been working to ensure the OECD remains focused on emerging priorities and is not tied to redundant priorities. Secretary-General Angel Gurria has lobbied successfully to increase the role of the OECD within the G20 and is leading useful G20 work.

Finance Ministers of the Americas and the Caribbean

The forum was founded by Mexico in 2008 to promote cooperation among Finance Ministers and to foster a dialogue with heads of International Financial Institutions (IFIs). The group includes 34 member countries, plus the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the World Bank Group, the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), and other regional bodies on an ad hoc basis. The host country Minister typically holds a closing press conference instead of issuing a negotiated Communiqué.

Relationship to Minister

The Minister of Finance typically attends these meetings, which featured discussions of medium-term economic challenges and policies, regional integration (including a separate session on trade and infrastructure), innovation and private sector development.

Relationship to Department

Finance officials from member countries typically meet in the spring, on the margins of the Annual Meetings of the IDB, to comment on the agenda and draft discussion papers for the Finance Ministers meeting, which is usually held in the summer. Deputies may work closely with the IDB, which often plays a quasi-secretariat role for the Finance Ministers meeting. Finance Canada coordinates on relevant issues with the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade, and Development in order to ensure policy coherence, including in support of the government's strategy for enhanced engagement with the Americas.

Significance

The forum represents an opportunity for G20 members to engage in outreach to the region, and it also permits Canada's Finance Minister to engage with Commonwealth Caribbean members of the Canadian-led constituencies at the IMF and World Bank Group. More generally, the forum allows Finance Ministers to hear different points of view in the region and to confront common economic challenges.

The forum is the only meeting of Western Hemisphere ministers that is not formally linked to the Organization of American States (OAS). In 2001 Canada hosted the OAS-linked precursor forum, Western Hemisphere Finance Ministers (WHFM), but that forum is now dormant.

Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC)

Relationship to Minister

The APEC Finance Ministers Meeting is typically held in the fall. This year the meeting was held on October 14 to 15 in Santiago, Chile. This forum is a useful venue to discuss economic cooperation and issues such as financial sector developments and infrastructure financing in the Asia-Pacific region. In recent years, the Parliamentary Secretary (Finance) has generally attended on the Minister's behalf, except when hosted by a major economy such as the U.S. (2011) or China (2014).

Relationship to Department

Canada's APEC Finance Deputy is the Associate ADM of the International Trade and Finance Branch, who accompanies the Minister or Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministerial meeting. In addition, there are Finance Deputies' and officials' meetings during the year to help develop the agenda for the Fall Ministerial.

Significance

APEC Finance Ministers started meeting annually in 1994, a year after APEC Economic Leaders (i.e. heads of government) began meeting (APEC was initially established as a trade ministers' forum in 1989). The process is consultative, based on consensus, with a rotating chair. Chile is chairing the group in 2019, Malaysia will chair in 2020.

In 1994, APEC members agreed to achieve "free and open trade and investment" in the region by 2020, hoping to transform the region into the world's largest free-trade zone. There are 21 APEC member economies, representing approximately 60% of the world economy.

Although the Finance Ministers' Meetings have been organized independently of the APEC Leaders' Meetings, key Finance Ministers' Meeting outcomes can form a part of the Leaders' agenda. The last notable deliverable by APEC Finance Ministers was the Cebu Action Plan (CAP), which was submitted to Leaders in 2015. The CAP is a voluntary, non-binding roadmap for the APEC region that focuses on four pillars: financial integration, fiscal reforms and transparency, financial resilience, and infrastructure development and financing. Canada's main objective at APEC meetings is to maintain engagement in this dynamic region.

Commonwealth Finance Ministers' Meeting (CFMM)

Relationship to Minister

Ministers of Finance of all Commonwealth countries are annually invited to participate in the Commonwealth Finance Ministers' Meeting (CFMM) to discuss global issues of mutual concern.  The Commonwealth's membership includes 52 countries, including five G20 countries (United Kingdom, Australia, India, South Africa, and Canada), as well as numerous small islands and African states.

Since 2010, the CFMM has been held on the margins of IMF and World Bank's Annual Meetings, in the hopes of making it a more effective forum and securing a higher participation level amongst Finance Ministers. The Canadian Minister of Finance chaired the 2010 meeting and the 2017 CFMM.

Relationship to Department

The Department of Finance prepares the background briefs and interventions for Canada's participation at the CFMM.

Significance

As the Commonwealth has no specific role in IMF, World Bank Group, or the G20, discussions are purely consultative.  For example, the Secretary General has been consulted by previous G20 Presidencies including Canada. The CFMM continues to make efforts to increase its relevance, including by focusing on issues of importance specific to its members.

La Francophonie Finance Ministers Meeting

Relationship to Minister

Since 2012, the International Organisation of La Francophonie have convened La Francophonie Finance Ministers Meeting (LFFMM) to discuss development financing issues. The La Francophonie membership includes 61 countries and 27 observers, of which 28 are lower income countries eligible.

The LFFMM has been held on the margins of Bretton Woods institutions annual meetings.

Relationship to Department

The Department of Finance prepares the background briefs and interventions for Canada's participation at the LFFMM.

Significance

As La Francophonie has no specific role in IMF, World Bank Group, or the G20, discussions are purely consultative. Still, the organisation has participated in preliminary discussions on the Third International Conference on Financing for Development in Addis Ababa to propose ways of mobilizing internal resources of francophone countries to increase development.

Paris Club

Canada is a founding member of the Paris Club, an informal group of 22 official creditors whose role is to find coordinated and sustainable solutions to the payment difficulties experienced by debtor countries. The French Ministry for the Economy and Finance acts as Secretariat and hosts regular meetings and negotiations.

Relationship to Minister

The Minister of Finance is responsible for approving debt relief or forgiveness provided to countries through the Paris Club and for ensuring that other Canadian government agencies, such as Global Affairs Canada and Export Development Canada, restructure their bilateral claims against these countries in line with Paris Club agreements.

Relationship to Department

Today, Canada's financial exposure at the Paris Club totals over $3 billion in loans to 34 developing countries. This debt is owed to Finance Canada (macro financial assistance loans); Global Affairs Canada (official development assistance and export development loans); and Export Development Canada (export finance loans).

The Department of Finance leads the Canadian delegation to the Paris Club with support from Export Development Canada and Global Affairs Canada. At regular "Tour d'Horizon meetings", officials monitor economic developments, exchange information on payment issues, and may negotiate debt relief with debtor countries. Representatives of international institutions, notably the IMF and the World Bank, also attend meetings as observers.

Significance

The Paris Club helps maintain the stability of the international financial system and helps sovereign creditors maximize returns on sovereign claims. Since 1956, the Paris Club has reached 433 agreements with 90 different debtor countries. The total debt treated in the framework of Paris Club agreements amounts to US$583  billion. Without the Club, debt restructuring could be messy, protracted, and costly for both debtors and creditors. Finally, the Club has also played a key role in enabling countries' re-integration into the global economy, providing debt relief at a moment when a country is opening up after years of detachment (e.g., Poland in 1991; Myanmar in 2013; Cuba in 2016).

*Paragraph redacted*

Financial Action Task Force (FATF)

Relationship to Minister

The Minister is responsible for approving the overall FATF mandate, which was made open-ended in 2019. Ministerial meetings will take place every two years starting in 2022 to discuss strategic issues and progress against the mandate, usually on the margins of IMF and World Bank annual meetings.

Relationship to Department

As policy lead and coordinator for Canada's Anti-Money Laundering and Anti-Terrorist Financing Regime, the Department of Finance leads Canada's delegation to the FATF. Meetings of the FATF Plenary, its decision making body, are held three times per year in February, June and October.

Significance

Established in 1989 under G7 leadership, the FATF is an intergovernmental body that sets global standards for combatting money laundering, terrorist financing and proliferation financing. Canada is a founding member of the FATF, which has 38 members and a global network of more than 190 countries committed to the implementation of FATF standards. The FATF uses a comprehensive peer review process to assess member's compliance with these standards. Canada was evaluated in 2016. The FATF identifies and engages with countries that pose money laundering and terrorist financing risks to the financial system and issues public lists of high-risk and uncooperative jurisdictions. It also assesses trends, risks and emerging issues in money laundering, terrorist financing and proliferation financing, and conducts outreach to private sector and non-governmental organizations.

Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action

Relationship to Minister

On June 14, 2019, the Minister of Finance announced he would be joining the Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action. The Coalition serves as a forum for Finance Ministers to promote a common set of climate action that Ministers can pursue within their mandates, and to share experiences on climate change-related fiscal policies and practices. The aim is for the Coalition to meet at least once a year during the World Bank Group and International Monetary Fund (WBG-IMF) Spring or Annual Meetings and will be officially launched at COP25 in December 2019.

Relationship to Department

The Department of Finance helps prepare the Minister for Coalition meetings, as well as being directly engaged with Coalition's Secretariat or other countries in technical work. A designated Sherpa, a senior official within the department, is also responsible for attending Sherpa meetings.

Significance

The Coalition was launched at the WBG-IMF Spring Meetings in April 2019 with the aim to drive stronger collective action on climate change and its impacts. The members of the Coalition endorsed a set of six common principles, known as the "Helsinki Principles" that promote national climate action, especially through fiscal policy and the use of public finance.

The Coalition and its Principles align with the Government of Canada's action on climate change, particularly the Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change and the Government's 2015 announcement to contribute $2.65 billion by 2020-21 in climate financing to help developing countries mitigate and adapt to the impacts of climate change.

To date, the Coalition has 38 members, including the G7 participants such as the United Kingdom, France and Germany.

Canada-China Economic and Financial Strategic Dialogue

Relationship to Minister

The Minister of Finance co-chairs the Canada-China Economic and Financial Strategic Dialogue (hereafter the EFSD), along with Canada's Minister of International Trade Diversification and China's State Councillor Wang Yong.

Relationship to Department

The Department of Finance and Global Affairs Canada jointly lead Canada's participation in the EFSD, coordinating input from other government departments and leading joint outcome negotiations with China's State Council.

Significance

Launched in 2017, the EFSD is the principal mechanism for Canada's economic engagement with China. China has become Canada's second largest trading partner, a major player in international institutions, and an increasingly assertive power projecting influence abroad. *Sentence redacted* The EFSD reaches above the Ministerial level to engage at the more senior State Councillor level, enabling high-level strategic conversations on crosscutting issues across a range of portfolios.

The first substantive EFSD was held in Beijing in November 2018. It delivered 50 joint outcomes in the fields of macroeconomic coordination, financial services and bilateral trade and investment. The timing of the next Strategic Dialogue will depend on the broader bilateral relationship, *portion of sentence redacted*.

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