After lengthy negotiations, all nations have unanimously consented to the G20 Leaders’ Declaration, India’s G20 sherpa Amitabh Kant said on Saturday evening.
Addressing the international and domestic press after the G20 nations adopted the New Delhi Declaration, Kant said the declaration was achieved without a single footnote or a chair summary.
Till now, all G20 ministerial meetings under India’s presidency had ended without joint communiques. Instead, a series of ‘Chairman’s Summary and Outcomes Documents’ had been issued.
In the 2022 summit in Bali, China had opposed private and bilateral creditors taking a haircut on their debt extended to stressed economies. Hence, a footnote was added to the final declaration, including China’s position that multilateral development banks (MDBs) should also take a haircut.
The New Delhi declaration represented Prime Minister Narendra Modi and India’s ability to bring together all developing countries, emerging markets, as well as China and Russia, Kant stressed.
“India’s declaration has 83 paragraphs. All these paragraphs have 100 per cent consensus across all countries,” he said.
He pointed out the outcomes and annex documents together stood at 112, which is more than 2.5 times what has ever been achieved before.
Kant said the final outcome document had a large India footprint. Case in point, a large number of initiatives that have been adopted at various G20 forums and working groups held throughout the year have found their way to the declaration.
These include the Deccan High Level Principles on Good Security, the Chennai High-Level Principles on a Sustainable and Resilient Blue Economy, the Goa Road Map for Tourism, the Gandhinagar Implementation Road Map for Land Reclamation and the Jaipur call for enhanced MSMEs.
The G20 has contributed to making India world-ready and the world India-ready, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said at the same briefing.
In the domestic context, officials have pointed out that India’s presidency has had an unprecedented ‘popular participation and societal involvement’ being organised in as many as 60 cities nationwide.
The declaration focuses on promoting strong, sustainable, balanced, and inclusive growth, aims to accelerate progress on sustainable development goals, and has come up with an action plan on that.
It has also endorsed high-level principles on lifestyle for sustainable development, voluntary principles on hydrogen, Jaishankar said.
The leaders have also noted India’s proposal for a One Future Alliance. This voluntary initiative aims to build capacity, and provide technical assistance and adequate funding support for implementing digital public infrastructure in low- and middle-income countries.
Global south focus
India had tried to ensure that the concerns of the global south constituted the G20 deliberations. “This is because after the pandemic, and the impact of the Ukraine crisis, and climate events, the countries of the global south are in deep economic distress,” Jaishankar said.
He said that India had taken inputs from as many as 125 countries from the global south at the beginning of its presidency at the New Delhi-organised Voice of Global South Summit.
Interestingly, the final text doesn’t mention the term ‘global south’ even once, and instead sticks to the terms “least developed countries” and “developing economies”.
Jaishankar said the government took special effort to make this G20 the most inclusive and diverse.