Ahead of the 2019 G20 Summit in Osaka, Japan on 28-29 June, IFAC (the International Federation of Accountants) has urged G20 countries to pursue smart regulation, heightened transparency, and inclusive growth to embrace Japan’s vision for an innovative and intelligent “Society 5.0”.

IFAC’s recommendations focus on actions that, the federation says, will strengthen the economy, ensure progress toward the sustainable development goals, and create a fair and empowered digital economy

“While growth has returned to most economies, substantial uncertainty and downside risk remain, along with the temptation for unilateral policy actions,” said IFAC CEO Kevin Dancey. “We urge leaders to collaborate on solutions to evolving global challenges, and to ensure more citizens are able to enjoy the benefits of the digital age.”

Ongoing tax and trade tensions demonstrate the desire for nations to act unilaterally on impactful issues. IFAC urges G20 countries to ensure a coherent, transparent global regulatory environment that limits fragmented regulatory regimes. The immense cost to the global economy—more than $780 billion annually in the financial sector—is unsustainable. 

Another G20 concern is addressing the needs of an aging society, which requires robust and resilient public sector practices. Accrual-based public sector accounting helps governments to develop a more accurate picture of national income, costs, assets and obligations. The result is increased transparency and accountability, and more informed decision-making to plan for the long-term.