November 14, 2014 / 6:43 AM / 5 years ago

OECD sees plans by G20 nations topping global growth target

BRISBANE Australia (Reuters) - The OECD said on Friday the plans of G20 nations to boost the world economy could beat their target of adding 2 percentage points to global growth by 2018, though geopolitical risks such as Ukraine and Ebola were mounting.

Angel Gurria, the secretary-general of the Paris-based Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, said that the more than 1,000 measures proposed since February would exceed the target, over the next five years, if implemented.

“Yes, if you take all the commitments and you assume they are going to execute impeccably, then ... it could take us beyond the 2 percent,” Gurria told Reuters in Brisbane ahead of the G20 Leaders Summit.

In September, Joe Hockey, treasurer of G20 host Australia, said the total had reached 1.8 percent.

The OECD and International Monetary Fund measure and monitor national growth strategies that will be unveiled at the end of the G20 Leaders Summit on Sunday.

“We have run out of monetary policy room, we have run out of fiscal policy room. What is left is structural reform and this is a structural reform agenda as big as it gets,” Gurria said.

The biggest risk to the global economy was an absence of reforms but other issues were mounting, he said.

“You now have some threats, geopolitical, the problems in Russia-Ukraine, the Middle East and now this Ebola is threatening...this is adding to already rather uncertain situation that we have.”

The OECD and G20 are both pushing to crack down on tax evasion, a key objective for the Leaders summit.

Finance ministers and tax chiefs from 51 countries last month signed an agreement to automatically swap tax information in a bid to curb tax evasion via secret bank accounts.

Pascal Saint-Amans, director of the OECD’s Center for Tax Policy and Administration, said a financial task force will deliver a commitment to G20 leaders to share information on multinational bank accounts from all financial centers except four: Panama, Cook Island, Vanuatu and Bahrain.

“Among them, Panama is the most significant financial center,” Saint-Amans said.

Gurria said that while much had been done to tackle tax evasion by individuals, more progress was needed on corporate tax.

“What about the multinationals? They’re not paying taxes because they are using the legal structures we’ve created over 80 years to avoid double taxation and we have created perfect double non-taxation. We need to reverse that,” he said.

Editing by Eric Meijer and Richard Borsuk

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