• Saturday, July 13, 2024

G20

India invites G20 leaders for virtual meet in November: ‘Countries know the date’

The G20 joint declaration unveiled at the September summit was seen as a significant diplomatic victory for India.

Indian prime minister Narendra Modi (second from left), US president Joe Biden (extreme right)and Saudi Arabian prime minister and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (to Modi’s right) and other leaders during the India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor talks on the margins of the G20 leaders’ summit, in New Delh, India, on September 9, 2023. (ANI Photo)

By: Shubham Ghosh

FOLLOWING the success of the G20 summit in September, India has sent invitations to leaders of the G20 member nations for a virtual summit of the grouping in November, something that prime minister Narendra Modi had announced at the mega event last month.

“Yes, invitations have been extended. I am not sure whether the date (of the summit) is made public. The countries know the date. There is a fixed date in November that we have,” Arindam Bagchi, spokesperson of India’s external affairs ministry, said at a media briefing in New Delhi in reply to a question.

“We look forward to participation by as many leaders as they can. It’s a virtual event. The participation is dependent on the invitee,” he said.

“But we do hope that there is a high degree of participation at this summit,” he added.

India held the presidency of the grouping in 2023, after taking over the baton from Indonesia last year and passing it to Brazil at the New Delhi summit.

The G20 joint declaration unveiled at the September summit, which was attended by world leaders such as US president Joe Biden and British prime minister Rishi Sunak, was seen as a significant diplomatic victory for India as it pulled off a breakthrough on the contentious Ukraine conflict amid apprehensions that the summit may not be able to release the document in view of sharp differences on the matter.

Modi came up with the idea of holding the virtual summit to assess the progress of proposals submitted and suggestions discussed at the September summit.

His critics alleged that Modi was using the G20 platform to facilitate his chances of winning next year’s general elections and the idea of holding a virtual meeting after the physical one was towards that direction.

As the G20 president, India has been focusing on issues like inclusive growth, digital innovation, climate resilience, and equitable global health access with an aim to benefit the Global South or the developing countries. The G20 member countries represent around 85 per cent of the global GDP, over 75 per cent of the global trade, and about two-thirds of the world population.

The grouping comprises Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Turkey, the UK, the US and the European Union (EU). The African Union was inducted as the new member of the G20 at the New Delhi summit.

(With PTI inputs)

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