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World’s Top 20 to discuss how to boost global GDP by 2%

Leaders who control 85 percent of the global economy are in Brisbane, Australia, to thrash out how to collectively grow the global economy by 2 percent. Jobs, growth, and tax evasion will remain top conversation points, but politics may steal the show.

Most of the leaders arrived in Brisbane late Friday evening, with the main summit events scheduled to kick off on Saturday.


"Like last year, this year’s G20 must be more than a talkfest," Australian President Tony Abbott said.

“The emphasis on this meeting is on trying to lift economic growth. The target is to try and get countries to commit to an extra 2% growth on what they would otherwise achieve,” Michael Pascoe, an Australian financial journalist, told RT.

However, topics like climate change, Ukraine, and Ebola are likely to crop up, despite the summit being a forum for economic dialogue.

“The G20 is primarily an economic meeting. It’s not a human rights meeting, it’s not meant to be an international relations meeting, it’s about getting the global economy functioning more effectively,” Pascoe said, adding that whenever politicians are in town, they will talk politics.

Many of the leaders are arriving fresh from the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit held in Beijing this week, where the US and China struck a major climate change deal, and Russia and China signed several energy accords, including a second major gas deal.

Reuters/Jason Reed

“I think you can expect the G20 to be a continuation of the APEC meeting. There are big factors at stake here,” Pascoe said.

G20 members include: Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Turkey, the UK, the US and the 28-nation EU.

Much attention will be on the leader of Russia, Vladimir Putin.

READ MORE: ‘Economic isolation breach of intl law': Top 5 takeaways from Putin ahead of G20

“Russia is an important global economy. You wouldn’t be having a G20 meeting without a major player. On the scale of things, the Russian economy is the same as Italy’s in GDP terms. You got to have a place at the table, and of course from a geopolitical view, it’s more important than its size in GDP,” Pascoe said.

Obama is expected to push the US led Trans-Pacific partnership (TPP), a trade agreement that doesn’t include China or Russia. The five BRICS nations- Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa are all advocates for developing economies.

The meeting will also show developing new alliances within the group, which as a whole control 80 percent of world trade.

Australia may be put in the hot seat for its controversial stance on emissions, after it became the first developed country in history to slash carbon credits.