UNCTAD-OECD Report on G20 Investment Measures (26th Report)

When the Global Financial Crisis broke in 2008 and early 2009, G20 members committed to refrain from introducing new barriers to investment or trade. They complemented this commitment by a request that WTO, OECD and UNCTAD monitor and report publicly on their new trade and investment policy measures.The COVID-19 pandemic set off a further crisis in early 2020 and when the impacts of the pandemic first became apparent, G20 members pledged to remain open to trade and investment to limit the damage of the COVID-19 pandemic on their economies.

This 26th monitoring report on investment measures by G20 members, jointly prepared by the UNCTAD and OECD Secretariats, documents measures that G20 governments have taken in relation to their pledge. It covers investment and investment-related measures adopted between 16 May 2021 and 30 September 2021.

G20 investment policy developments in the reporting period suggest that G20 Leaders appreciate the importance of openness to international investment as a precondition to containing the economic damage associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. After a period of frequent adjustments of investment policies, G20 members have now adopted very few measures.

The report also confirms that policy interest in instruments to safeguard essential security risks that are occasionally associated with international investment remains high. Comprehensive and detailed policies are now in place in almost all G20 members.

While the COVID crisis has dominated attention over the past years, G20 members will need to address many other crises, most pressingly the climate and environmental crises, as well as continued and deepening poverty across and within societies. International investment can make an important contribution to address these crises – provided relevant policies are set to enable such outcomes.