I warmly welcome our G20 Chief Coordinator, Former Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla and Prof Sachin Chaturvedi, Director General RIS, who have joined us today for a talk on “g20[at]2023 - The Roadmap to Indian Presidency” by Shri V. Srinivas, Secretary to the Government of India.
I also warmly welcome all distinguished guests, the Heads of Mission, members of the Diplomatic Corps, in particular, the representatives of Indonesia and of Italy.
Since 1st December last year, the G20 Troika consisting of the past, current, and incoming Presidencies of Italy, Indonesia, and India have been working closely to ensure consistency to further strengthen the G20 agenda.
India will assume the G20 Presidency on 1st December 2022; and in 2023, the G20 Summit will be held in India for the first time; and this will be a major event in India’s calendar of multilateral diplomacy.
The global economy today is faced with volatility, uncertainty and instability. The geopolitical and geo-economic ferment is on account of so many reasons which has resulted in rising energy prices and food insecurity. Moreover, the disruptions due to the Covid pandemic have been immense. Many countries, especially developing countries, find themselves in a difficult situation. The role of G-20, as a platform connecting the world’s major developed and emerging economies, will be critical in shaping global trends. This is on account of the fact that the G20 members represent more than 85% of world GDP, 70% of international trade and over 60% of global population.
Also, it would be well to recall that G-20 was constituted in 1999 in the wake of the 1997 global financial crisis as a new grouping of countries having systemic economic influence. Meetings were held at the level of Finance Ministers and of Governors of Central Banks, with the objective to discuss policies to achieve international financial stability. Thereafter, it was under the shadow of the 2008 international financial and banking crisis that the first G20 Summit was held. Today, with the global economy in a crisis, the role of G-20 assumes greater importance.
What does India bring to the G-20 table? It is the fastest-growing major economy, with a large and growing consumer base. It is a leader in pharma and IT sectors. In terms of innovation, India has the third-largest unicorn base in the world. In the fintech sector, India clocked the highest volume of digital transactions in the world, with 6.28 billion UPI transactions in July 2022. India’s overall exports touched an all-time high of US$ 670 billion last year. Indian economy continues to exhibit strong fundamentals, a growth trend, and resilience.
India’s participation in the G20 process stems from the realization that as a major developing economy, India has a vital stake in the stability of the international economic and financial system. As a founding member of the G20, India continues to utilize its platform to raise issues of vital importance to sustainable growth and those that impact developing countries.
It will, undoubtedly, be a busy 2023 - with about 100 official meetings expected to be organized under the Sherpa track and about 40 meetings in the Finance Track. In addition, about 50 academic interactions, workshops and side events are expected to be held. So, clearly the G-20 Team India will be busy as it works with other G20 member states for bringing stability to the global economy which is faced with numerous challenges. In its Presidency, India will seek to work for meaningful outcomes to meet these challenges.