G20 countries pledge to boost growth and dampen Brexit shock

Finance officials of major economies pledged on Sunday to boost sluggish global growth and promised to defend against the shockwaves of Britain’s vote to leave the European Union. In a joint statement after a two-day meeting, envoys of the Group of 20 also rejected trade protectionism, an issue that has risen in prominence as U.S. Republication presidential candidate Donald Trump has talked about restricting access to American markets. The United States, China, Britain, Germany and other governments at the meeting in Chengdu in western China pledged to use spending, monetary policy and regulatory reforms to strengthen growth. However, there were no concrete new joint initiatives announced.

We have to be ready as government, the Bank of England has to be ready as monetary authority, throughout that period to respond to any instability created by that uncertainty and to ensure that the economy continues to operate smoothly.

UK Treasury chief Philip Hammond

Britain’s new finance minister Philip Hammond sought to address concerns among global finance chiefs about the uncertain path ahead for the country’s exit from the European Union, saying there could be more clarity later this year. But Hammond also warned that volatility in financial markets was possible throughout the two-year period set out for the Brexit negotiations which Britain has yet to trigger. “What will start to reduce uncertainty is when we are able to set out more clearly the kind of arrangement we envisage going forward with the European Union,” Hammond said. The president of Germany’s central bank, Jens Weidmann, said there were no signs yet that economic development in Europe had been affected by the UK’s referendum result.