15 November , 2022 |

Current Affairs

G20 Summit: Explained

Some few hundred of the world’s premier politicians, diplomats and policymakers are expected to converge on Indonesia ahead of the seventeenth G20 (Group of Twenty) Summit, which is expected to commence on 15th November in Nusa Dua, Bali. This latest gathering of the G20 is expected to focus heavily on food and energy security, both of which have come into the spotlight following the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Attendance The G20 consists of the world’s foremost political and economic powers, accounting for over 75% of international trade, 80% of global GDP and more than two-thirds of the global population. This edition of the event is expected to be attended by several influential world leaders, including the Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman of Saudi Arabia, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, recently elected UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak as well as Joe Biden and Xi Jinping, Presidents of the USA and China respectively. A somewhat conspicuous absence is Russian President Vladimir Putin, who will be represented instead by his Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. The summit will be chaired by Joko Widodo, the leader of Indonesia (which currently holds the G20 presidency). Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has also been invited to address the gathering virtually.

Supply chains The Russian invasion of Ukraine and strict zero-COVID policies in China have severely disrupted supply chains, resulting in soaring food and energy prices. The impacts of the ongoing crisis can be seen across the world, with the UK experiencing sky-high costs of living and inflation in the EU at 10.9% in September this year. As with several other high-level summits this year, talks will revolve primarily around building resilient supply chains and fostering greater global cooperation.

Climate change With the summit taking place at the same time as the prominent COP27 conference in Egypt, climate change is also likely to be a significant point of discussion, with India, in particular, pushing for global solar energy infrastructure under the One Sun One World One Grid (OSOWOG) scheme, which seeks to transfer electricity generated in one area to other regions in order to meet their energy needs. The greater focus on renewables also comes amidst an oil supply crunch caused by Western sanctions on Russian petroleum and a sharp cut in production by the OPEC+ grouping.

Takeaways India is set to take over the G20 presidency from Indonesia by December 1st, just weeks after this summit concludes. The issues discussed in the upcoming summit will likely reflect India’s priorities and provide insight into the G20’s agenda for the next 12 months. In addition, several key meetings will be conducted on the sidelines of the conference, most notably between American and Chinese Presidents Joe Biden and Xi Jinping. Amidst the approaching climate crisis, threats of a global recession and the spiralling conflict in Ukraine, the two superpowers have attempted to repair communication channels.

Greater global cooperation and multilateralism may well be the only viable approach to tackling issues in an increasingly more complex and interconnected world. However, with several contentious issues, including clean energy, the Ukraine War and Chinese belligerence, it remains to be seen to what extent the G20 will allow cooperation.

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For more information on G20 Summit, check out their website g20.org

Picture Credits - Flipboard

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