- The G20 or Group of Twenty is an intergovernmental forum comprising 19 countries and the European Union (EU).
- The G20 is composed of most of the world’s largest economies, including both industrialized and developing nations, and accounts for around 90% of gross world product (GWP), 75–80% of international trade, two-thirds of the global population, and roughly half the world’s land area
- The G20 was founded in 1999 in response to several world economic crises
- Since 2008, it has convened at least once a year, with summits involving each member’s head of government or state, finance minister, foreign minister, and other high-ranking officials; the EU is represented by the European Commission and the European Central Bank
- To decide which member nation gets to chair the G20 leaders’ meeting for a given year, all members, except the European Union, are assigned to one of five different groupings
- All countries within a group are eligible to take over the G20 Presidency when it is their group’s turn. Therefore, the states within the relevant group need to negotiate among themselves to select the next G20 President
- The G20 operates without a permanent secretariat or staff
- The incumbent chair establishes a temporary secretariat for the duration of its term, which coordinates the group’s work and organizes its meetings
- The 2023 and 2024 summits will be hosted by India and Brazil respectively
- In addition to these 20 members, the chief executive officers of several other international forums and institutions participate in meetings of the G20
- The initial G20 agenda focused on the sustainability of sovereign debt and global financial stability in an inclusive format that would bring in the largest developing economies as equal partners
- Further, the recurring themes covered by G20 summit participants have related in priority to global economic growth, international trade, and financial market regulation
After the adoption of the UN Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Climate Agreement in 2015, more “issues of global significance” were added to the G20 agenda, which include migration, digitization, employment, healthcare, the economic empowerment of women, and development aid.
India and G20
- 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.
- India’s agenda at the G20 Summits is driven by :
- the need to bring in greater inclusivity in the financial system
- to avoid protectionist tendencies and
- for ensuring that the growth prospects of developing countries do not suffer
- It is headed by the Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors, who generally meet four times a year, with two meetings being held on the sidelines of World Bank /International Monetary Fund meetings.
- Focus areas: Fiscal and Monetary policy issues such as global economy, infrastructure, financial regulation, financial inclusion, international financial architecture, and international taxation.
- The Sherpas of member countries are the personal emissaries of the Leaders.
- They concentrate on socio-economic issues such as agriculture, anti-corruption, climate, digital economy, education, employment, energy, environment, health, tourism, trade and investment.
- They oversee all the negotiations over the year, discuss the agenda for the SOmmit and coordinate the substantive work of G20.