G20 Foreign Ministers Meeting

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    • G20 Foreign Ministers Meeting was recently concluded in Bali, Indonesia.

    About

    • It was hosted by Indonesia as it is the chair of G20 for 2022.
      • The meet was Guided by the theme ‘Recover Together, Recover Stronger’.
      • After Indonesia, India will assume the presidency of G20 from December 2022.
    • Ukraine Russia conflict:
      • The conversation on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and its impact on food security and energy dominated this meeting.
      • Russia’s top diplomat walked out of a meeting and denounced the West for “frenzied criticism” and squandering a chance to tackle global economic problems.
      • The forum was the first face-to-face meeting between Russia and the fiercest critics of its war.
    • India China:
      • The External Affairs Minister of India met the State Councilor and Foreign Minister of China.
      • India called for an early resolution of all the outstanding issues along the LAC in Eastern Ladakh.
      • Recalling the disengagement achieved in some friction areas, India reiterated the need to sustain the momentum to complete disengagement from all the remaining areas to restore peace and tranquility in the border areas.

    Know about G20

    • Origin:
      • The G20 was formed in 1999 in the backdrop of the financial crisis of the late 1990s that hit East Asia and Southeast Asia in particular. 
      • Its aim was to secure global financial stability by involving middle-income countries. 
      • As stated by the official G20 Website: 
        • “On the advice of the G7 Finance Ministers, the G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors began holding meetings to discuss the response to the global financial crisis that occurred,” 
    • Objectives:
      • Policy coordination between its members in order to achieve global economic stability, sustainable growth;
      • To promote financial regulations that reduce risks and prevent future financial crises; and
      • To create a new international financial architecture.
    • Members & guests: 
      • Members: 
        • Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Japan, India, Indonesia, Italy, Mexico, Russia, South Africa, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, Turkey, the United Kingdom, the United States, and the European Union. 
        • Spain is also invited as a permanent guest.
      • Others: 
        • Each year, the Presidency invites guest countries, which take full part in the G20 exercise. Several international and regional organizations also participate, granting the forum an even broader representation. 
    • Together, the G20 countries include: 
      • 60 percent of the world’s population, 
      • 80 percent of global GDP, and 
      • 75 percent of global trade.
    • Presidency of G20 & Troika:
      • The presidency of the G20 rotates every year among members.
      • The country holding the presidency, together with the previous and next presidency-holder, forms the ‘Troika’ to ensure continuity of the G20 agenda. 
      • Italy, Indonesia, and India are the Troika countries right now.
    • Working of G20:
      • The G20 has no permanent secretariat. 
      • The agenda and work are coordinated by representatives of the G20 countries, known as ‘Sherpas’, who work together with the finance ministers and governors of the central banks. 
      • India recently said ex-NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant would be the G20 Sherpa after Piyush Goyal.
    • Meetings and Summits:
      • Since 1999, an annual meeting of finance ministers has taken place.
      • The first G20 Summit took place in 2008 in Washington DC, US. 
      • In addition to Summits, the Sherpa meetings (that help in negotiations and building consensus), and other events are also organised throughout the year.
      • The Finance Track:
        • Within the G20 process, Finance Track includes the meetings held among Finance and Economy Ministers, Central Bank Governors, Vice Ministers and Sherpas (negotiators) designated by the respective economic ministries.
    • Criticisms:
      • The G-20 has been criticized for various reasons like: 
        • Lack of transparency, 
        • Encouraging trade agreements that strengthen large corporations, 
        • Being slow to combat climate change, and 
        • Failing to address social inequality and global threats to democracy.
      • Membership policies:
        • The G-20’s membership policies have come under fire, too. 
        • Critics say the group is overly restrictive, and its practice of adding guests, such as those from African countries, is not proven very effective.

    Major initiatives of G20

    • G20 Innovation League: 
      • It is a unique event dedicated to sharing views and innovative solutions to key global challenges and to fostering international cooperation.
      • Hosted by the G20 Italian Presidency.
    • G20 Alliance for the Empowerment and Progression of Women’s Economic Representation (G20 EMPOWER). 
      • Launched during the 2019 G20 Summit in Japan.
      • It aims at accelerating women’s leadership and empowerment in the private sector by leveraging its unique alliance among business leaders and governments across the G20 countries. 
    • G20 leaders on Afghanistan: 
      • An extraordinary meeting of G20 leaders on Afghanistan was held under Italy’s Presidency of the G20.
    • G20 Ministers for Agriculture Meeting: 
      • The G20 Ministers of Agriculture met for the first time in Paris in 2011 to address the impact of the economic crisis on the agricultural sector threatened by price volatility. 
      • Since 2015, they have met annually to discuss food security, nutrition and global agricultural development.
    • Environment Related Initiatives:
      • Global Coral Reef Research and Development Accelerator Platform 
        • To accelerate scientific knowledge and technology development in support of coral reef survival, conservation, resilience, adaptation and restoration.
      • Circular Carbon Economy (CCE) Platform
        • A tool towards affordable, reliable, and secure energy and economic growth.
    • COVID-19 
      • The G20 has mobilised resources to address the immediate financing needs in global health to support the research, development, manufacturing, and distribution of safe and effective COVID-19 diagnostics, therapeutics and vaccines.

    Significance of G20 for India

    • India’s upcoming presidency:
      • India has been active in the G20 processes in the Sherpas and Finance Track. 
      • India will hold the G20 Presidency from 1 December 2022 to 30 November 2023.
      • As the G20 Presidency, India will be in a position to identify, highlight, develop and strengthen international support for priorities of vital importance to developing countries in diverse social and economic sectors. 
    • Economic opportunities:
      • Hosting of G20 Presidency would also result in economic opportunities in different sectors such as tourism, hospitality, IT and civil aviation among others.
        • The sectors of significant importance would be ranging from energy, agriculture, trade, digital economy, health and environment to employment, tourism, anti-corruption and women empowerment, including in focus areas that impact the most vulnerable and disadvantaged
    • Platform for India’s leadership:
      • As India enters the Presidency year of G20, its areas of focus should be: 
        • Reforming multilateral institutions; 
        • Global financial stability; 
        • Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs); 
        • Digital economy and governance; and 
        • Illicit capital flows.

    Source: TH