G20 : Economic Cooperation ahead

G20 summit will open pandora of opportunities

Note4Students

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : members of G20

Mains level : opportunities for India

G20 summitContext

  • India is going to be at the centre stage of geopolitical spectrum as India will be hosting G20 summit presidency from December 2022. As Harsh V. Shringla, India’s chief G20 coordinator and former Foreign Secretary, (Amitabh kant is G20 Sherpa of India) recently said, “Our G20 Presidency would place India on the global stage, and provide an opportunity for India to place its priorities and narratives on the global agenda.”

What is G20 (Group of Twenty)?

  • Composed of most of the world’s largest economies: 19 countries plus European Union, including both industrialized and developing nations. Together, its members represent more than 80% of the world’s GDP, 75% of international trade and 60% of the world’s population.
  • Role: To address major issues related to the global economy such as international financial stability, climate change mitigation, and sustainable development.
  • It is an Intergovernmental forum.
  • Strategic role: The G20 holds a strategic role in securing global economic growth and prosperity.

G20 summitIndia and the presidency of G20 summit

  • In November this year, the 17th G20 Heads of State and Government Summit will take place in Bali.
  • After Indonesia, India will assume the presidency of the G20 from December 1, 2022 to November 30, 2023.
  • By hosting the summit of the G20, India will have the opportunity to assume centre stage in proposing and setting the global agenda and discourse.
  • India can assert its political, economic and intellectual leadership while hosting the G20 presidency.
  • Further it Provides India an opportunity to also champion the causes of developing and least developed countries.
  • India could invite and engage countries from Africa and South America to ensure better and more balanced representation at the G20.

G20 summitChallenges before India:

         Global

  • World affected by the pandemic: Uneven vaccine availability has been flagged by many countries. Vaccine issue upset some countries.
  • Ukraine conflict: According to external affairs ministers Dr.S.Jaishankar due to Ukraine  conflict world is divided and this poses the challenge for India to bring rival camp on same stage
  • Climate change: Divergent view of developed and developing countries on climate change can be the bone of contention between west and the rest.
  • The rise of an assertive China: To maintain the delicate balance between NATO, G7 on the on hand while Russia and china on the other (as India is part of both QUAD and SCO).

     Domestic

  • Economic challenges: Such as stagflation, unemployment, exchange rate, declining prospects for exports and rising trade deficit.
  • Terrorism: Cross border terrorism emanating from Pakistan.

Indonesia has focused on three key pillars in its presidency of G20 presidency:

  • Global health architecture: president of Indonesia Joko Widodo talked about a global contingency fund for medical supplies, building capacity in developing countries to manufacture vaccines and the creation of global health protocols and standards.
  • Sustainable energy transition: as part of its roadmap to reach net zero by 2060, Indonesia had slashed the coverage area of forest fires sevenfold. The country has restored peatlands and rehabilitated 50,000 hectares of mangrove forests.
  • Digital transformation

What India can address?

  • Issues of global concern: Terrorism, climate change, stagflation etc.
  • Domestic and regional: economic recovery, trade and investment, unemployment, patent waivers on diagnostics, therapeutics, vaccines etc.
  • Greater co-operation and co-ordination: free trade agreements, supply chain resilience mechanism, stressing on green and digital transformations in the economy and its impact on societal well-being.
  • Other important Areas :such as technology transfer, assistance towards green economy, greater access to trade for developing countries, addressing debt distress of countries by offering sustainable aid and loan programmes, tackling food and energy prices/security for vulnerable economies etc.

Why G20 summit presidency is an opportunity for India?

  • India exchange the G20 presidency with Indonesia and chose 2023 instead of 2022 to host the G20 countries.
  • India wanted to showcase its prowess in its 75th year of independence as cornerstone of new emerging world order. As India is part of Quad and SCO BRICS -the warring factions at world stage, it’s an opportunity in crisis to become the bridge of the divided world.
  • India is hosting the summit in Kashmir. World media will be in the Kashmir. In the direct message to world India will again assert that Kashmir is an integral part of India.

Way ahead

  • As India will be hosting G20 and SCO summits, India will be central in outlining key priority areas. India can assert its political, economic and intellectual leadership which will have to address issues that help in cement the Fault-line in the world order.
  • India’s leadership could define the coming years and decades of global discourse and avenues of cooperation.

Other related Information

SCO (Shanghai Co-operation Organization):

  • The Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) is a Eurasian political, economic and security organization. It is the world’s largest regional organization, 40% of the world population, and more than 30% of global GDP.
  • Members: The Shanghai Five group was created on 26 April 1996; China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia and Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, India and Pakistan.

QUAD:

  • Known as the ‘Quadrilateral Security Dialogue’ (QSD), the Quad is an informal strategic forum comprising four nations, namely – United States of America (USA), India, Australia and Japan.
  • One of the primary objectives of the Quad is to work for a free, open, prosperous and inclusive Indo-Pacific region.

G7:

  • The Group of Seven (G7) is an inter-governmental political forum consisting of Canada, France Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States. In addition, the European Union is a ‘non-enumerated member.

Mains Question

Q. India can take advantage of G20 for its economic growth and security architecture. Discuss.

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