India's G20 Sherpa, Amitabh Kant set the ball rolling for India's Presidency of the G20 Summit 2022-23 at the G20 Sherpa Meeting that began today in Udaipur. In his address, he said that India has taken over the presidency of G20 Summit at a time of geo-political crisis, rise in global debt, with as many as 200 million driven into poverty and over a 100 million people losing their jobs globally due to Covid crisis and inflation.
"We are passing through massive geopolitical crisis. We have seen the breakdown of global supply chains, countries suffering from rising debt and the huge crisis of climate action and climate finance," Kant said addressing a side-event on Sustainable Development Goals at the first G20 Sherpa Meeting here.
He said that with India assuming Presidency of G20 Summit at this critical juncture, means a lot for the country as it will help us to tell the narrative of the remarkable work done in the health care sector done in managing the COVID crisis, the massive work done on manufacturing Covid-19 vaccine, digital public infrastructure and to showcase to the world that India is the "Mother of Democracy". This Presidency will enable New Delhi to put the agenda of the developing countris before the leaders' summit in September 2023.
Holding an informal interaction with media ahead of the commencement of the first G20 Sherpa meeting in Udaipur, Amitabh Kant said that he would be making a presentation tomorrow enlisting priorities for India. He said, there are 12 working groups in the Sherpa Finance track, where the Secretary from the Department of Economic Affairs will also give a presentation.
"Earlier, we used to get agenda items from the developed world. Now, we get to set the agenda for the G20 meeting. We will tell the world that we are the mother of democracy," Amitabh Kant
He said that the Sherpa track, Finance track and Engagement group will work towards one objective. In addition, the International Monetary Fund will make a presentation on global economic scenario. Later in the day, the discussion will revolve around India's priorities. The international organisations and invitees will share their perspective and India will listen to all of them. He said, efforts will be made to bring about a consensus in this meeting on the agenda set by India. Leaders from G20 member countries, and those of nine guest countries, viz. Bangladesh, Egypt, Mauritius, Netherlands, Nigeria, Oman, Singapore, Spain and the UAE, along with representatives of international organisations are attending the four day meeting in Udaipur.
The Sherpas, personal emissaries of the G20 leaders, will oversee the negotiations to arrive at a consensus on key issues facing the world. There are 13 different working groups identified as Sherpa Tracks including the one on Disaster Risk Resilience and Reduction introduced by India for its presidency.
The working group on Disaster Risk Resilience and Reduction is important as G20 countries have a high level of exposure to disaster risk.
The working group is expected to encourage collective work by the G20, undertake multi-disciplinary research and exchange best practices on disaster risk reduction.
During the meeting, India will introduce broad priorities of all Working Groups and hear views from G20 countries, guests, and international organisations, an official statement said.
Amitabh Kant added that the Prime Minister Narendra Modi is of the view that the meeting should be decisive, ambitious and action-orientied. Issues such as technological transformation, green development, spotlighting women-led development, accelerating implementation of SDGs, and facilitating inclusive and resilient growth have been flagged by India as part of its agenda for the G20 presidency. He said that Udaipur has been chosen for the G20 Sherpa meeting because the government wants to make it a global tourism destination.
43 Sherpas of various countries are participating in this G20 Sherpa meeting which began at 6:15PM on 4 December.
The Sherpa meetings will work towards building consensus on key cross-cutting issues, which will be discussed in the various G20 work streams for inclusion in the Leaders' Declaration, which will be tabled at the G20 Summit in New Delhi next year, Kant said.Discussions during the meet will focus on five overarching thematic areas of technological transformation, green development & LiFE, accelerated, inclusive and resilient growth, multilateralism and food, fuel and fertilizers, women-led development, tourism and culture.
A 'Chai pe Charcha' will also be held to foster deeper conversations and strengthen ties among G20 member countries and their Sherpas.
The first Sherpa meeting under India's presidency plans to offer delegates a unique 'Indian experience' through cultural performances, art exhibitions, and excursions to various destinations including locations such as the Kumbhalgarh Fort, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and the Ranakpur Temple Complex.