India’s presidency of the Group of Twenty (G20) this year presented an exceptional opportunity for the world’s fifth-largest economy to spearhead a collective approach to tackle multiple, complex, and interconnected challenges, while considering the aspirations and needs of developing countries. In a diplomatic triumph, India, at the 18th G20 Summit in New Delhi, brought the whole world together to reach a consensus on the G20 New Delhi Leaders’ Declaration, fully embodying the spirit of this year’s G20 theme: ‘One Earth, One Family, One Future’
BY JYOTI VERMA AND RICHA SANG
Team India, brilliantly led by Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, centred India’s G20 presidency on a forward-looking and result-oriented agenda for the world and the group as an exemplar of change, a vision for sustainability and growth, and a platform focused on attending crucial issues of the global south. Prime Minister Modi’s vision, based on India’s age-old ethic of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam, vehemently reiterated that inclusiveness and global cooperation would fortify India’s G20 Presidency.
A framework of 4Ds defined India’s identification of its priorities as G20 President—the promotion of decarbonisation, digitalisation, equitable development, and the deescalation of conflict. These 4Ds were oriented towards the achievement of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). These framing ideas were reflected across the seven Task Forces of Think20 (T20), an official Engagement Group of the G20 serving as an “idea bank” for the G20 by bringing together think tanks and high-level experts to discuss policy issues relevant to the group. The seven T20 task forces dealt with ‘Macroeconomics, Trade, and Livelihoods’; ‘Our Common Digital Future’; ‘LiFE, Resilience, and Values for Well-being’; ‘Clean Energy and Green Transitions’; ‘Reassessing the Global Financial Order’; ‘Accelerating SDGs’; and ‘Reformed Multilateralism,’ in all summing the key priorities of India.
SHRI JAGDEEP DHANKHAR
HON’BLE VICE PRESIDENT OF INDIA
“Congratulations Bharat, visionary leadership and the entire team for meticulous execution and successful conclusion of G20 summit in New Delhi. The historic summit, inspired by our civilizational ethos, would ever be remembered for forging consensus among world leaders on the urgent need to address common problems faced by humanity at large. G20 New Delhi Leaders’ Declaration, a comprehensive document, lays the roadmap for collective global action in building a prosperous future, embracing the essence and spirit of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam – One Earth, One Family, One Future. I laud the Prime Minister’s vision that made it truly the people’s G20. More than 200 meetings in 60 cities covering all the states and union territories of India is unprecedented. At the same time, the leaders’ summit with 42 delegations was one of the largest in size, scale and scope. This has provided opportunity to the world to experience richness of diversity, democracy and talent of India. India’s G20 presidency has proven to be inclusive, ambitious, action-oriented, decisive and peoplecentric.”
2023 G20 NEW DELHI SUMMIT
India demonstrated remarkable diplomatic expertise and exceptional organisational skills when it hosted the 18th G20 Summit in New Delhi on September 9-10, 2023.
The New Delhi summit was a significant moment as it marked India’s inaugural G20 summit, and the culmination of numerous meetings and processes involving ministers, senior officials, and civil societies throughout the year. In addition to the leaders of G20 countries, India, as the G20 host nation, invited allied nations to the summit. Bangladesh, Egypt, Mauritius, the Netherlands, Nigeria, Oman, Singapore, Spain, and the UAE were among the guest nations in attendance. The summit’s theme, Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam – “One Earth, One Family, One Future” – emphasised India’s commitment to United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), climate action, green development initiatives, multilateral financing, digital public infrastructure (DPI), artificial intelligence (AI), and international taxation, among other critical issues.
Being the first G20 summit in South Asia, the 2023 G20 Summit boasted the largest-ever delegation, with over 30 heads of state and government, as well as leaders from international organisations. The milestone underscored India’s growing economic influence and global presence, validating the country’s evolving foreign policy and its expanding geopolitical ambitions.
The G20 leaders included US President Mr. Joe Biden, Brazil President Mr. Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, Türkiye President Mr. Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Russian Foreign Minister Mr. Sergey Lavrov, UK Prime Minister Mr. Rishi Sunak, French President Mr. Emmanuel Macron, Canadian Prime Minister Mr. Justin Trudeau, Chinese Premier Mr. Li Qiang, Australian Prime Minister Mr. Anthony Albanese, German Chancellor Mr. Olaf Scholz, Italian Prime Minister Ms. Giorgia Meloni, Japanese Prime Minister Mr. Fumio Kishida, Crown Prince and Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, South African President Mr. Cyril Ramaphosa, Argentine President Mr. Alberto Ángel Fernández, and South Korean President Mr. Yoon Suk-yeol.
The guests included Bangladesh’s PM Ms. Sheikh Hasina, Egypt’s President Mr. Abdel Fattah El Sisi, Mauritius’ PM Mr. Pravind Kumar Jugnauth, Netherlands’ PM Mr. Mark Rutte, Nigerian President Mr. Bola Ahmed Adekunle Tinubu, Singapore’s PM Mr. Lee Hsien Loong, Spain’s President Mr. Pedro Sanchez, UAE’s President His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and Oman’s Deputy PM H.E. Sayyid Asad Bin Tariq Al Said who is also the personal representative for the Sultan. The Indonesian President represented ASEAN as its chair, while Egypt’s President represented the African Union Development Agency-NEPAD. Mr. Azali Assoumani, Chairperson of the African Union and the President of Comoros, also took part in the summit.
Leaders of pivotal multilateral organisations were also part of the 2023 G20 Leaders’ Summit in New Delhi. The dignitaries included WTO Director General Ms. Ngozi Okonjo Iweala, World Bank President Mr. Ajay Banga, WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, UN Secretary-General Mr. Antonio Guterres, OECD Secretary-General Mr. Mathias Hubert Paul Cormann, IMF Managing Director Ms. Kristalina Georgieva, ILO Director-General Mr. Gilbert Fossoun Houngbo, ISA Director General Dr. Ajay Mathur, CDRI Director General Mr. Amit Prothi, ADB President Mr. Masatsugu Asakawa, and Chair of the Financial Stability Board, Mr. Klaas Knot.
During its G20 presidency, India hosted an astounding 230 meetings across 32 sectors in more than 60 cities – a scale of in-person participation unmatched in previous G20 meetings. New Delhi, India’s capital, served as the summit’s venue, combining rich historical and cultural heritage with modern infrastructure, exemplifying India’s ability to seamlessly blend tradition and progress. In anticipation of the event, India projected approximately 1,50,000 guests arriving in the country in 2023, including those participating in G20 events organised by non-governmental engagement groups.
The first day of the 2023 G20 New Delhi Summit had two sessions. The first session, “One Earth” focused on issues concerning world economy, food security, climate and energy, and environment. In the second session, “One Family,” the leaders discussed inclusive growth, the SDGs, health and other issues.
The second day of the Leaders’ Summit began early with a visit to Rajghat – the memorial dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi – followed by a tree plantation drive at the summit venue. The visit to the memorial reflected the Summit’s broader humanitarian ethos, and the tree plantation activity resonated with the summit’s focus on sustainability.
The 18th G20 Heads of State and Government Summit in New Delhi closed with the session, ‘One Future,’ culminating in the symbolic handover of the G20 presidency to Brazil, which will assume chair starting on December 1.
SMT. TARA GANDHI BHATTACHARJEE
CHAIRPERSON, NATIONAL GANDHI MUSEUM AND SAVE GANGA MOVEMENT
“I congratulate every Indian citizen for successful completion of the G20 Summit, under the quintessential leadership of Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi ji. As an active and engaging senior citizen, I heartily congratulate the Honorable Prime Minister for the successful organisation of the G20 Summit. The G20 summit was a grand celebration of peace, love and brotherhood with the arrival of the Heads of State and their representatives of various countries. In this conference, various important agendas in the spheres of economy, trade, development, energy, environment and peace were deliberated. Citizens play an important role in all these issues, challenges, and their implementation. The development of the country and society depends only on people’s power and potential. Dear Rajat Shukal ji, your contribution and cooperation in this direction is commendable. AsiaOne Media Group is a very creative initiative for the development of the country. May you always remain dedicated towards social service and welfare of the country.”
Founded in 1999 in response to global economic crises, the G20 has become the primary platform for international economic and financial cooperation. This group brings together the world’s 20 most powerful economies, including Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Italy, India, Indonesia, Japan, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, Turkey, the United Kingdom, the United States, and the European Union. The group represents a staggering 85% of global GDP, over 75% of global trade, and roughly twothirds of the world’s population. With the addition of the African Union as a member at the New Delhi Summit, the G20’s global reach has expanded significantly.
Since 2008, G20 member countries have convened annually to address critical financial, strategic, and economic matters, making these leaders’ summits the central arena for global policymaking. India’s hosting of the 2023 G20 Summit showcased its ability to organise large-scale international events with precision, solidifying its position as a global leader dedicated to addressing pressing global challenges. The success of the summit was not only a diplomatic victory for India, but also its important role in accomplishing a consensus on critical global issues. The G20 New Delhi Leaders’ Declaration achieved unprecedented unanimous approval, with all 83 paragraphs garnering consensus from G20 members, including China and Russia, and notably without footnotes, Chair’s Summary, or any dissent. The declaration addressed various aspects, including the finance track and the Ukraine conflict’s economic impact.
Union Finance Minister Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman highlighted the Indian G20 Presidency’s accomplishments, emphasising strategies to strengthen Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs), regulate cryptocurrencies, implement digital public infrastructure (DPI) for enhanced financial inclusion, and expedite debt relief for vulnerable nations.
DR. MALLIKA NADDA
CHAIRPERSON, SPECIAL OLYMPICS BHARAT
“The Honourable Prime Minister of India, Shri Narendra Modi, while taking the gavel of the Group of 20 (G20) Presidency from Indonesia last year, had said that our G20 presidency will be “inclusive, ambitious, decisive, and action-oriented.” For us at the Special Olympics Bharat, the objective of inclusivity is the foundation of our mission. I am proud that our special athletes have been participating in the Olympic Games throughout the world. They have made a mark in the games with many medals, and have brought honour to the country. The G20 countries represent 85% of the world’s GDP, 75% of the world’s trade, and two-third of the world’s population. As the citizens of India, the presidency of this important group brings us the responsibility of building a fair society with opportunities for each and everyone. With equality, we not only stand to achieve several Sustainable Development Goals, but also give a new direction to the world. I praise AsiaOne Magazine and Shri Rajat Shukal for promoting India’s initiatives under the G20 presidency through a series of features.”
On the topic of climate change, the declaration underscored the urgency of mobilising funding for developing countries and clean energy technologies to achieve netzero emissions by 2050, calling for a substantial increase in climate funding.
One of the most significant achievements of India’s G20 Presidency was the inclusion of the African Union in the G20. In a bid to foster economic growth and integration, an MoU was signed among India, the United States, Saudi Arabia, the European Union, the United Arab Emirates, France, Germany, and Italy, paving the way for the India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor (IMEC), a comprehensive network of transportation routes aimed at connecting Asia, the Arabian Gulf, and Europe. While specific project details are yet to be outlined, IMEC falls under the umbrella of the Partnership for Global Infrastructure Investment (PGII), an initiative aimed at supporting vital global infrastructure projects. The PGII is a collaborative effort by G7 nations to fund infrastructure projects in developing nations. It is considered to be the bloc’s counter to China’s Belt and Road Initiative.
While the leaders could not reach a consensus on phasing out fossil fuels, despite their significant global emissions, they did agree to triple global renewable energy capacity, emphasised the urgency of peak emissions before 2025, and acknowledged the need for a 43% reduction in greenhouse gases by 2030 to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius.
The G20 New Delhi Leaders’ Declaration also featured commitments to various environmental initiatives, including Lifestyle for Environment (LiFE), sustainable energy transitions and finance, SDGs, curbing plastic pollution, and safeguarding the oceanbased economy. The summit also witnessed the launch of the Global Biofuel Alliance (GBA) and the establishment of relevant standards and certification processes.
At the leaders’ summit, India played an important role in facilitating consensus on geopolitical issues, particularly the Russia-Ukraine crisis. The country engaged closely with Brazil, South Africa, and Indonesia, demonstrating the influence of emerging markets in shaping diplomatic outcomes. Additionally, the declaration recognised the contributions of Turkey and the UNbrokered Istanbul Agreements in ensuring smooth delivery of grain, foodstuffs, and fertilisers between Russia and Ukraine. India’s diplomatic efforts during the G20 presidency were extensive. The deliberations involved over 200 hours of non-stop negotiations, 300 bilateral meetings, and 15 drafts to achieve consensus.
G20 NEW DELHI LEADERS’ DECLARATION, A DIPLOMATIC TRIUMPH
The Leaders’ Summit achieved an unexpected win by unanimously adopting the G20 New Delhi Leaders’ “The Honourable Prime Minister of India, Shri Narendra Modi, while taking the gavel of the Group of 20 (G20) Presidency from Indonesia last year, had said that our G20 presidency will be “inclusive, ambitious, decisive, and action-oriented.” For us at the Special Olympics Bharat, the objective of inclusivity is the foundation of our mission. I am proud that our special athletes have been participating in the Olympic Games throughout the world. They have made a mark in the games with many medals, and have brought honour to the country. The G20 countries represent 85% of the world’s GDP, 75% of the world’s trade, and two-third of the world’s population. As the citizens of India, the presidency of this important group brings us the responsibility of building a fair society with opportunities DR. MALLIKA NADDA CHAIRPERSON, SPECIAL OLYMPICS BHARAT for each and everyone. With equality, we not only stand to achieve several Sustainable Development Goals, but also give a new direction to the world. I praise AsiaOne Magazine and Shri Rajat Shukal for promoting India’s initiatives under the G20 presidency through a series of features.” OCTOBER-NOVEMBER 2023 | ASIA ONE | 85 Declaration. This accomplishment was particularly noteworthy, given the initial skepticism of experts, diplomats, and officials. In a diplomatic success, India achieved a unanimous declaration on all developmental and geopolitical matters on the first day of the summit, despite differences over the RussiaUkraine conflict. Negotiators from India worked tirelessly, bridging gaps between the members of the group. Bilateral meetings held by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi with leaders such as US President Mr. Joe Biden, UK Prime Minister Mr. Rishi Sunak, German Chancellor Mr. Olaf Scholz, and Japanese Prime Minister Mr. Fumio Kishida on the sidelines of the G20 summit contributed to this consensus.
Another crucial initiative was to engage the Global South, including many G20 members focused on matters of global development. The 83-paragraph Declaration also made headway on cryptocurrency regulation, and outlined about $10 trillion requirement for climate change adaptation and mitigation projects for the Global South.
The 37-page document called on all member states to refrain from the use of force to seize territory. It also called on states to abide by the principles of the UN Charter and dubbed the use or threat of nuclear weapons ‘inadmissible’. The declaration called on Russia and Ukraine to ensure immediate and unhindered delivery of grains, fertilisers and other goods in order to “meet the demand in developing and least developed countries, particularly those in Africa.” It called for a halt on military destruction or other attacks on food and energy infrastructure and pointed out concerns about high levels of volatility in food and energy markets.
The G20 member countries committed to a phase down of coal in line with national circumstances. With major fossil fuel producers, such as Saudi Arabia, Russia and Australia – and coal-dependent nations such as India and South Africa – part of the discussion, the group also pledged to triple renewable energy sources by 2030. Developing countries need $5.8 to $5.9 trillion till 2030 to accomplish their climate goals, while the world would need another $4 trillion per annum investment by 2030 to help reach net-zero carbon emission goal by 2050.
The G20 New Delhi Leaders’ Declaration also called for reforms in international financial institutions, managing debt vulnerabilities of low and middle-income countries, and the beginning of exchange of tax-relevant information on crypto assets by 2027.
The global leaders stressed that central banks remain strongly committed to achieving price stability according to their respective mandates. “With notable tightening in global financial conditions, which could worsen debt vulnerabilities, persistent inflation and geo-economic tensions, the balance of risks remains tilted to the downside. We, therefore, reiterate the need for well-calibrated monetary, fiscal, financial, and structural policies to promote growth, reduce inequalities and maintain macroeconomic and financial stability,” the document added.
The declaration welcomed the initial steps taken by the Financial Stability Board, Standard Setting Bodies, and certain jurisdictions to study what lessons can be learned from the recent banking turbulence.
Additionally, the G20 leaders recognised the importance of supplyside policies, in particular the policies that augment labour supply and boost productivity to increase overall growth and alleviate price pressures.
SHRI EKNATH SAMBHAJI SHINDE
CHIEF MINISTER, MAHARASHTRA
“I am happy to know that AsiaOne Magazine is showcasing a special feature on India’s presidency at G20. I hope that the upcoming feature, “India’s G20 Presidency: Promoting Universal Oneness with ‘One Earth, One Family, One Future,” will give its international readers an insight into the country’s vision of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam and the objective of representing the ‘whole world as one’ at the G20 Summit in India. With India as the president of the forum this year, it is our golden opportunity to connect with most of the world. The Hon’ble PM, Shri Narendra Modi ji has said that India’s G20 Presidency belongs to the entire nation, and is a unique opportunity to showcase India’s strengths to the entire world. Maharashtra is proud to welcome the visiting G20 delegates and other international guests for deliberations, and investments in industries and tourism. The state will host 14 meetings of the G20 summit. I am delighted that the whole country is working as a team.
Jai Hind! Jai Maharashtra!”
CLIMATE ACTION IS CRUCIAL
The G20 countries collectively account for roughly 80% of worldwide emissions. Under India’s G20 presidency, the G20 approved a target to triple global renewable energy capacity and stressed the urgency of reaching peak emissions before 2025. Furthermore, the G20 New Delhi Leaders’ Declaration recognised that to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit), a 43% reduction in greenhouse gases by 2030 compared to 2019 levels is essential.
The declaration also included commitments to mainstream LiFE campaign, implement sustainable energy transitions, provide sustainable finance, reaffirm their commitment to the pursuit of UN SDGs, tackle plastic pollution, preserve the ocean-based economy, and more.
Additionally, the summit marked the launch of the GBA, a new organisation dedicated to promoting sustainable biofuels’ development and adoption, as well as the establishment of relevant standards and certification processes.
During the declaration negotiations, India and other developing nations emphasised the importance of developed countries fulfilling their commitments, while developed nations advocated for a global focus on climate-related targets. The G20 New Delhi Leaders’ Declaration called for the phasing out and rationalisation of fossil fuel subsidies and committed to reducing “unabated coal power,” while boosting clean energy generation.
GLOBAL BIOFUELS ALLIANCE
Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi announced the launch of the GBA on September 9. Nineteen countries and 12 international organisations, including both G20 members and non-members, have agreed to join this alliance. India, Brazil, and the US are the alliance’s founding members. Other G20 member countries supporting the initiative include Argentina, Canada, Italy, and South Africa. Bangladesh, Singapore, Mauritius, and the UAE, though not G20 members, were invited to participate in the initiative.
The alliance’s launch took place in the presence of visiting world leaders, US President Mr. Joe Biden, Brazil President Mr. Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, Argentine President Mr. Alberto Ángel Fernández, Italian Prime Minister Ms. Giorgia Meloni, Bangladesh Prime Minister Ms. Sheikh Hasina, and others.
Announced on July 22 during the G20 Clean Energy Ministerial in Goa, the GBA aims to work towards enhancing global collaboration and cooperation for adoption of biofuels and to identify global best practices for their development and deployment, said Shri Hardeep Singh Puri, Union Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas and Housing and Urban Affairs. The alliance will constitute 85% of global production of ethanol of which the US produces 55%, Brazil produces 27%, and India produces 3%. “India has the maximum potential and is fastest growing,” said the union minister.
GBA is also being supported by major international organisations such as the World Economic Forum, International Energy Forum, International Energy Agency. The alliance as a guiding principle will support each country’s national-level policy/strategy/ goals/circumstances, and member countries can choose to be associated with initiatives best suited for their respective decarbonisation missions. The membership of the alliance is open for interested countries across the world.
A competent organisation, the GBA has set technical standards for Sustainable Aviation Fuel business in collaboration with relevant industry organisations. It has a three-category membership structure bringing together member countries, partner organisations, and industries.
SHRI PARSHOTTAM RUPALA
HON’BLE MINISTER OF FISHERIES, ANIMAL HUSBANDRY AND DAIRYING, GOVERNMENT OF INDIA
“It is really momentous for us as a nation to witness a once-in-20-year moment to host the G20. It is a watershed moment not only in our history, but also for the world as it confronts myriad challenges and conflicts. The world has recognised India’s role in uniting the world to discuss and develop pragmatic global solutions for the well being and development of the planet and everyone living on it. With the message of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam (the World is One Family), India has made the G20 realise its potential to bring real change in the world. The presidency has been an opportunity for us to connect with the world and see our own problems through a global lens. It is noteworthy that the opportunity has come to us during the Amrit Kaal, when we have a vision of becoming a developed economy. I congratulate AsiaOne Magazine and Shri Rajat Shukal for coming up with a dedicated series underlining the key Government initiatives planned for G20 this year.”
INCLUSION OF THE AFRICAN UNION
Under Indian leadership, G20 changed forever, as it witnessed the inclusion of the African Union (AU) into the bloc, setting the stage for more reforms in global multilateral organisations.
India has always remained a vocal advocate for reforming global organisations. In 2023, the country walked the talk by setting an example at the G20 under its presidency, by giving the African Union a seat at the elite table. Africa being one-fifth of global humanity cannot remain underrepresented on the global stage. South African presidential spokesperson Mr. Vincent Magwenya on September 9 said that the inclusion is an important step towards the reforms that the 55-nation AU had been seeking in global and multilateral institutions, such as the United Nations Security Council.
The pan-African bloc, which collectively had a $3 trillion GDP last year, has its headquarters in Ethiopia’s capital Addis Ababa. Though AU has 55 members, five military-ruled nations are currently suspended.
“We have invited the African Union with a vision to give permanent membership,” PM Modi said at B20, a business forum and prelude to the 2023 G20 New Delhi Summit.
Team India believed that Africa is also the continent of promise – in terms of its demographics, talent, resources, and strategic location. “More broadly, the underrepresented voices of the Global South must be taken to the G20, because the Group has weight, authority, and a real ability to shape the future,” Union External Affairs Minister Shri S Jaishankar said.
PROF. S.P. SINGH BAGHEL
HON’BLE MINISTER OF STATE FOR HEALTH & FAMILY WELFARE, GOVERNMENT OF INDIA
“India’s presidency of the Group of Twenty (G20) is a momentous occasion for every citizen. The theme of our presidency — One Earth, One Family, One Future — encapsulates our ancient beliefs of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam (the world is one family) and Sarve Bhavantu Sukhinah (May there be happiness, harmony, peace and prosperity for all). The G20 is a very important forum as it brings together the world’s major and systemically important economies. India’s G20 Presidency takes it a step further by presenting us the opportunity to steer the world towards inclusive and sustainable growth. The recent COVID-19 pandemic has taught us that only through a sustainable health system, a sustainable economy can be built. Effective pandemic prevention, preparedness, and response can only be facilitated through continuous interventions in the health sector at the regional, national, and global levels. | congratulate AsiaOne Magazine and Shri Rajat Shukal for capturing our objectives and initiatives for G20 in a series of features.”
INDIA-MIDDLE EAST-EUROPE ECONOMIC CORRIDOR
At the 2023 G20 Leaders Summit, India, the US, the UAE, Saudi Arabia, France, Germany, Italy, and the European Union jointly signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to establish the India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor (IMEC). This corridor aims to foster economic integration and connect Asia with Europe.
US President Mr. Joe Biden, in cooperation with Saudi Arabian Crown Prince His Royal Highness Mohammed bin Salman at the request of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, expressed strong support for this new project. The UAE President actively promoted the initiative, envisioning the Arabian Peninsula as an economic bridge between India and Europe.
The IMEC is envisioned as a comprehensive network of transportation routes, encompassing both railways and sea lanes, with its primary goal being to facilitate economic growth by fostering greater integration between Asia, the Arabian Gulf, and Europe.
The initiative falls under the umbrella of the PGII, an initiative led by Western nations that seeks to provide support and secure funding for vital infrastructure projects worldwide. These projects include the development of roads, ports, bridges, and communication systems, all aimed at bolstering global trade and fostering international cooperation. The project is estimated to be a major medium of economic integration between India, West Asia and Europe, and is poised to give a new direction to connectivity and sustainable development of the entire world.
US President Mr. Joe Biden called the launch of the India-Middle EastEurope Economic Corridor “a big deal,” saying one is going to hear the phrase economic corridor more often in the coming decade.
Being positioned as a modern-day Spice Route, the IMEC involves the laying of a railway link through the Arabian Peninsula that could then link up with shipping passages to India and Europe on both ends of the proposed corridor. The project will aim to enable greater trade among the partner countries, including energy products.
In addition to the rail link and an electricity cable, the India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor will have a hydrogen pipeline and a high-speed data cable, according to a document prepared by European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen. The document also called the project “a green and digital bridge across continents and civilizations.”
Experts like Mr. Jon Finer, US President Biden’s Principal Deputy National Security Adviser, suggest three major reasons for developing the corridor. First, the project would increase prosperity among the countries involved through an increased flow of energy and digital communications. Second, it would help address the absence of infrastructure needed for growth in lower- and middle-income nations. And third, it could help “turn the temperature down” on “turbulence and insecurity” coming out of the Middle East, Mr. Finer said.
SHRI V. MURALEEDHARAN
HON’BLE MINISTER OF STATE FOR EXTERNAL AFFAIRS; AND PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS, GOVERNMENT OF INDIA
“Bharat’s presidency of the G20 has added a significant and momentous chapter in the glorious journey of our nation. Under the charismatic leadership of Hon’ble Prime Minister Narendra Modi ji, our G20 Presidency proved to be a grand success that will go down in the history books for centuries to come. PM’s inclusive and people-centric approach made Bharat’s G20 Presidency a unique experience. In more than 220 meetings in 60 cities across the nation, over 25,000 delegates from more than 115 countries participated. Under our G20 Presidency, not only the international community connected closely with us, but so have our own people. Ours truly was a People’s G20. More than 1.5 crore citizens from all walks of society participated in G20’s ‘Jan Bhagidari’ activities organised across the length and breadth of the country… We walked the talk as the “Voice of Global South” with the induction of African Union as a permanent member of G20. I appreciate AsiaOne Magazine and Mr. Rajat Shukal for coming up with dedicated features on India’s G20 presidency.”
Last year, the Indonesian G20 presidency hosted about 180 meetings in more than 20 cities. The next presidency, Brazil is watching with great admiration what India is doing under its G20 presidency, and for setting high standards, said its envoy in a statement.
Brazilian Envoy to India H.E. Mr. André Aranha Corrêa do Lago said that his country is watching with great admiration what India is doing after taking the G20 presidency. Praising India for creating very high standards, do Lago said that next year Brazil will take over the presidency and this is why the country needs to be very attentive to what India is doing.
From Itanagar in the east to Gandhinagar in the west, and from Srinagar in north to Chennai in south, India’s G20 gatherings illuminated the nation’s robust democracy and flourishing cultural tapestry before a multitude of international delegates leading up to the Leaders’ Summit in New Delhi. These meetings spurred widespread public engagement across the country, instilling a sense of pride in its citizens, and affording them the unique chance to position their cities on the global stage of highlevel diplomacy. The G20 meetings presented India’s diverse facets and a holistic picture of the vast and diverse country, effectively dismissing any misinterpretations about its culture, democracy, beliefs, and territorial unity. Additionally, the meetings showcased to the world the nation’s immense tourism potential, and captured the power and performance of its IT and industrial hubs.
With India taking over the G20 presidency amid multiple challenges confronting the bloc, India’s unconventional approach of making its presidency more connected with people helped it take its message of ‘One Earth, One Family, One Future’ far and wide.
“Our global positioning is reflected in a record of enhanced relationships. Presidency of G20, chairing SCO, taking forward QUAD are notable developments… Our journey as the Mother of Democracy progresses along with a determination to combat the scourge of terrorism,” Union External Affairs Minister Shri S Jaishankar said.
“Inclusive, ambitious, and actionoriented” were the words Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi used to define India’s G20 presidency in Bali, Indonesia last year. Now, 11 months later, there is no doubt that India has delivered on its promise of inclusivity, said G20 Chief Coordinator Mr. Harsh Vardhan Shringla.
“Indian democracy derives its strength from the spirit and ethos of the country’s citizens, and peoplecentric development is its defining feature. India’s inclusive approach to the G20 presidency is, therefore, an extension of its domestic approach to development and progress, which focuses on engaging all sections of society. Providing every citizen with the necessities of life is the highest priority for the government and it has consistently ensured that there is enough social security support for all citizens,” added the G20 Chief Coordinator.
Through its G20 presidency, India has shared its experiences with the world and showcased its achievements in the spheres of education, health, green energy, digital public infrastructure, women-led development, and financial inclusion.
“The last decade of India has been a decade of unprecedented socioeconomic transformation. Today, the country excels in digital technologies, and is making impressive strides in renewable energy building the world’s largest solar wind park and actively working towards producing green hydrogen at a large scale,” underlined Mr. Shringla.
RECORDS AND VOICES
The meetings conducted under India’s G20 presidency accomplished numerous milestones. One such meeting in March 2023 hosted the largest ever gathering of foreign ministers under a G20 Presidency. This was preceded by a meeting of G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors in February. During both gatherings, India emphasised the challenges encountered by the Global South and ensured that these issues resonated on the global stage for economic matters.
In fact, raising the concerns of the Global South and amplifying the voice of these countries at the G20 meetings was an important feature of India’s G20 presidency. It also underscored the nation’s commitment to an “inclusive” G20 Presidency. As Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi said at the start of the G20 Foreign Ministers’ meeting, earnestly appealing to the G20 countries to come together and “focus not on what divides us, but on what unites us.”
India’s G20 Presidency highlighted quite strongly the significant barriers developing countries face in realising their developmental goals owing to greater vulnerabilities in the context of climate change, unsustainable debt, and food, fuel, fertiliser insecurity. In his remarks at the Forum for IndiaPacific Islands Cooperation (FIPIC) Summit in Papua New Guinea, PM Modi said, “India considers it a responsibility to bring the issues, expectations and aspirations of the Global South to the attention of the world through the G20 platform.”
With productive inputs and suggestions from all participants, both Foreign Ministers’ meetings were able to reach consensus on many vital issues. The Chair Summary and Outcome Document of the G20 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting included wideranging outcomes, such as recognising the need for multilateral reforms, calls for greater G20 cooperation with Africa, Global Skill Mapping reference for better integration of workers, and finding ways to counter terrorism and narcotics. The Global South has also responded well, with louder calls for reinvigorated multilateralism to make global governance more representative, effective, transparent and accountable.
The G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors Meeting addressed many critical economic issues in its Chair Summary and Outcome Document. On climate finance, the document reaffirmed the commitment made by developed countries to the goal of mobilising $100 billion climate finance per year by 2020 and annually through 2025, to address the needs of developing countries. Additionally, there was a clear recognition of the urgent need to address debt vulnerabilities in low and middle-income countries.
SADHVI NIRANJAN JYOTI
HON’BLE MINISTER OF STATE FOR CONSUMER AFFAIRS, FOOD AND PUBLIC DISTRIBUTION; AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT, GOVERNMENT OF INDIA
“A significant year for India, the year 2023 is when the country has the presidency of the Group of Twenty (G20). A watershed moment in our history, it lets us drive the message of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam (the world is one family) to every nation in the world. It is well-timed that the year falls in the Amrit Kaal of our independence. It also requires us to act responsibly and be part of the mega mission of ‘global common good’ with pride. Under the able leadership of Honourable Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, India is undertaking special efforts for popularising millets during India’s G20 Presidency. The year has also seen the nation accomplishing a new digital inclusion milestone with 19.79 crore ration cards digitised under the Public Distribution System. I congratulate AsiaOne Magazine and Shri Rajat Shukal for the informative content created under its G20-themed series of articles. The articles list the key initiatives undertaken by each Government department through the year of India’s G20 presidency.”
DPI, THE WAY TO GO
During its Presidency, India has strongly promoted the role of digital public infrastructure in powering economic growth in the countries of the Global South and making significant strides in areas such as health, education, e-commerce, and financial inclusion. To advance this conviction, the Digital Economy Working Group focused on mobilising G20 members to finance, design, build and regulate inclusive, interoperable and secure DPIs.
A global coalition of multilateral organisations, including the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, led by Union External Affairs Minister Shri S Jaishankar, will take India’s DPI model to 50 countries in the next five years.
Speaking at the recent B20 Summit in New Delhi, Mr. Nandan Nilekani, Chairman of Infosys and the Founder Chairman of the Aadhaar project, said, “So over the next few years, you will see the proliferation of how this new way of thinking about digital infrastructure at population scale, using an open architecture, is going to be more and more ubiquitous and prevalent around the world.”
The DPIs will also play a critical role in climate adaptation and mitigation to facilitate the increasing need for cash transfers to fortify vulnerable areas and people, and emergency funding after extreme climate events like floods. “For example, one of the things that will happen in climate adaptation is you want to give anticipatory financing for building more resilient homes, in the situation of higher sea levels,” Nilekani said, “and you can do that using DPI.”
The visionary added that the Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC) platform can also be used to build “reverse logistics” and enable a circular economy for recycling and reducing wastage. Further, with greater electric vehicle adoption, the technology used in the DPIs can be deployed to create an interoperable network for accessing charging stations and batteries. “So fundamentally, not only has DPI helped us so far, it’s also going to help us in the future,” Mr. Nilekani added.
Calling the DPIs strategic, the IT industry veteran highlighted India’s response during the pandemic when these technologies facilitated, at short notice, massive cash transfers and nationwide vaccination process. “These are also “data empowerment architecture,” as the data generated from these platforms is a form of “digital capital”. Individuals can use the digital capital to get ahead in life. You can use the data to get a better loan, to get better jobs, to get better skills,” he said.
SHRI BHAGWANTH KHUBA HON’BLE MINISTER OF STATE FOR CHEMICALS & FERTILIZERS; AND NEW AND RENEWABLE ENERGY, GOVERNMENT OF INDIA
“India’s Presidency of the Group of Twenty (G20) is a matter of immense pride for the whole country. Under the visionary leadership of our Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modiji, India has attained remarkable achievements for the group across key sectors. Our G20 presidency has focused on fostering international collaboration to address pressing global issues, recognising the interconnectedness and shared responsibilities of nations in finding solutions to these challenges. India has consistently demonstrated a strong commitment to research and innovation at global platforms such as the World Health Assembly, World Economic Forum, and G7, among others. The primary objective of this collaborative effort is to optimise research and innovation endeavours in prioritised areas and diseases. I congratulate the people of India on the G20 presidency and the milestones this presidency has achieved. I also congratulate AsiaOne Magazine and Shri Rajat Shukal on their efforts to highlight the work done under the presidency.”
SHIFTING TO THE TRADITIONAL SUPERFOOD, MILLETS
With global food security concerns intensified by climate change, the 100th meeting under India’s G20 Presidency – the Meeting of Agricultural Chief Scientists – brought India’s traditional superfood – millets – in focus with the launch of the “Millets And OtHer Ancient Grains International ReSearcH Initiative (MAHARISHI)’’.
India, the largest producer of millets in the world, has responsibly spearheaded this initiative to facilitate research and collaboration on these climate-resilient and nutritious grains. Being more water-efficient, pestresistant, heat-tolerant, millets are also less dependent on synthetic fertilisers and pesticides, making them good for the environment, people, and farmers simultaneously.
At the WHO’s first global summit on traditional medicines and other co-branded events in Gandhinagar, Gujarat, from August 17-19, together with the Health Ministers’ Meeting and Joint Finance Meeting, the guests were served specially selected milletmade meals, including millet wraps, millet risotto, millet gulab jamun, and millet soup. The G20 Health Meeting was attended by health ministers from 29 countries, including 14 G20 members, seven invited countries, and eight other nations, with the Union Health Ministry dubbing it “India’s largest global health event.” NEW INITIATIVES Resilient, inclusive, and with sustainable growth as its guiding light, India’s G20 Presidency initiated a new workstream for Disaster Risk Reduction. According to the World Meteorological Organization, extreme weather events of the last 50 years have cost the world over 2 million deaths and $4.3 trillion in economic losses. The key idea behind this workstream is that if the lives, livelihoods, and infrastructure remain vulnerable to such shocks, which are only increasing in frequency as well as intensity, then all our efforts to ensure global prosperity can potentially be rendered futile.
To overcome this problem, there is an urgent need to rapidly expand the Global Coverage of Early Warning Systems, make infrastructure systems disaster-resilient and put in place stronger national financial mechanisms. In this context, the Disaster Risk Reduction Working Group aims at achieving the targets identified in the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction.
Another unique legacy of India’s G20 Presidency was the newly established Engagement Group – Startup20.
Start-ups fuel innovation and economic growth with their immense potential to respond to a rapidly evolving environment. India believes that the innovation and adaptability of start-ups played a critical role in navigating its way out of the COVID-19 pandemic and these businesses can liberate society from many more contemporary challenges. The prime objectives of the group are to harmonise global start-up ecosystems to facilitate their working together while preserving the freedom of national start-up ecosystems to let them grow. As the third largest startup ecosystem in the world, India is committed to creating a policy framework that can harness the potential of start-ups to script new stories of growth.
As part of India’s G20 Presidency, G20 Digital Innovation Alliance (G20- DIA) initiative was launched under MeitY Startup Hub. It recognises and accelerates the growth of startups from all G20 countries and nine invited guest countries in six sectors – Ed-tech, Health-tech, Agri-tech, Fintech, Secured Digital Infrastructure, and Circular Economy that are using digital technologies to solve humanity’s most pressing needs. Market access, corporate connect, investor connect, skilling, and networking sessions were conducted as part of the program, which culminated in a three-day grand summit in Bengaluru on August 18, 2023, where selected start-ups and hundreds of investors and stakeholders
participated. A total of 174 start-ups from 29 countries were part of the G20-DIA program. These start-ups pitched to a jury of global leaders at the G20- DIA Summit. The summit culminated with an awards ceremony in which 30 start-ups were honoured in various categories.
SHRI NISITH PRAMANIK
HON’BLE MINISTER OF STATE FOR HOME AFFAIRS; AND YOUTH AFFAIRS & SPORTS, GOVERNMENT OF INDIA
“India’s presidency of the G20 has ushered in a new era, underpinned by the powerful message of ‘global common good. The G20, a crucial international forum, comprises nations with immense economic potential. India’s G20 presidency takes on unprecedented significance due to the backdrop of major geopolitical crises, mounting concerns over food and energy security, slower progress towards sustainable development, escalating public debt burden, and urgent climate changerelated challenges. Amidst these complex issues, one of the most promising solution providers is the youth. This year, the Y20 set new milestones for the world. During the Y20 summit in Varanasi, Y20 Communiqué was discussed, negotiated, and signed with unanimous consent. In the spirit of fostering collaboration, networkingand advocacy for youth-centric agendas on a global stage, the Y20 Summit 2023 provided invaluable insights and drove impactful change. | recognise the efforts of AsiaOne Magazine and Mr. Rajat Shukal for coming up with dedicated, detailed features on India’s G20 presidency.”
IMAGINING A CYBER SUCCESS WORLD
Essentially a forum for economic cooperation created to address major issues related to the global economy, such as international financial stability, climate change mitigation and sustainable development, G20 traditionally did not discuss crime and security. However, in 2023, the security of cyberspace is paramount. The times when a major share of global economic activity and transactions take place online surely make cyberspace deserve due attention of the global leadership. The issues involved are also intrinsically linked to several of the priorities for the G20 this year. These include inclusive and resilient growth, technological transformations, public digital infrastructure, strengthening multilateral institutions, among others.
A crucial G20 meeting titled “Crime and Security in the Age of NFTs, AI and Metaverse” on July 13-14, at Gurugram, Haryana, was a collaborative multi-agency effort which in a way reflected the expanse of the issues involved. Unlike a traditional G20 conference, this conference had the Union Ministry of Home Affairs as host. The ministry organised the conference in partnership with the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, National Security Council Secretariat, Ministry of External Affairs, Central Bureau of Investigation, and Department of Telecommunication. National Forensic Science University, Rashtriya Raksha University, and Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham were academic partners, Data Security Council of India (DSCI) was the industry partner, and Grant Thornton a knowledge partner. Interpol and UNODC were the international collaborators for the event. It brought under one roof a spectrum of stakeholders of cyberspace for intense discussions on a range of issues.
The participants included 75 foreign delegates, 31 international speakers and subject matter experts, Secretaries and senior functionaries of Government of India, Chief Secretaries, Director General of Police, officials of the cybersecurity establishment, Law Enforcement Officers, Chief Information Security Officers of various central organisations, representatives of sectoral regulators, legal fraternity, banks and financial institutions, fintech, ICT service providers, academia and industry bodies. Over 1,200 delegates and invitees attended the conference in person and over 24,000 witnessed it online.
In the plenary session, participants were unanimous in their concerns about the threats posed by new and emerging technologies and the need for concerted global efforts to address these challenges. Union Home Minister Shri Amit Shah encouraged the delegates to work towards achieving convergence in legislative framework to deal with digital offences and establishing mutual assistance mechanisms for apprehending and prosecuting cybercriminals; establishing modalities for cross border mutual assistance for threat intelligence sharing and real time response; creating a common platform for sharing best practices, coordinating regulation and defining global benchmarks through cooperation; and building a dedicated common 24/7 channel for checking digital financial frauds which would affect preventive, protective and recovery action, and together work towards achieving a “Cyber Success World.”
Over the two days, six technical sessions were held where domain experts from across the world deliberated on various topics covering a vast gamut of issues of crime and security in the context of new and emerging technologies exemplified by AI, NFTs and Metaverse. The sessions discussed Internet Governance – National Responsibility and Global Commons; Securing Digital Public Infrastructure (DPI) amidst Unprecedented Scale of Digitization – Design, Architecture, Policies and Preparedness; Extended Reality, Metaverse and future of Digital Ownership – Legal and Regulatory Framework; AI: Challenges, Opportunities and Responsible Use; Connecting Dots in the Dark Net: Challenges of Crypto Currency and Dark-net; and Criminal Use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) – Evolving a Framework for International Cooperation.
During the conference, the “Cyber Volunteer Squads”, drawn from seven premier educational universities, were flagged off. These student-volunteers, who gained valuable insights into issues of cyber space and hands on experience of such events, go back to their campuses and undertake programs to spread cyber awareness amongst the public, identify and flag malicious content, aid law enforcement efforts using their expertise and launch volunteer enrolment drive. The effort of the Ministry of Home Affairs aimed at enlisting community participation in building a cyber resilient society. The Chair’s Summary released at the end of the deliberations said that while emerging technologies such as AI, Big Data, Cloud Computing and others have high potential for creating economic opportunities, and are neutral in nature, these could increase vulnerabilities and expand attack vectors. Hence, there is an urgent need that these advanced technologies are used ethically, in ways that respect international law, with malicious actors being prevented from exploiting them for criminal and terrorist purposes.
DR. SANJEEV KUMAR BALYAN
HON’BLE MINISTER OF STATE FOR FISHERIES, ANIMAL HUSBANDRY & DAIRYING, GOVERNMENT OF INDIA
“It is a proud moment for every Indian that our nation has the presidency of the G20. It is a watershed moment in our history, as we seek to play an important role by finding pragmatic global solutions for the well being of all, with the true spirit of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam (the world is one family). The presidency of the important group has come to us in the Amrit Kaal of independence. It is a matter of pride for every Indian, and requires each one of us to be part of it. India’s foreign policy has focused on working for the ‘global common good’. Through its G20 leadership, India wishes to extend this principle towards finding sustainable solutions to some of the key global challenges emerging out of the interconnectedness of the world, such as climate change, new and emerging technologies, food and energy security. I congratulate AsiaOne Magazine and Mr. Rajat Shukal for coming up with a dedicated feature on the key initiatives planned for G20 this year. The feature aptly captures the spirit of India’s G20 presidency.”
It is critical to strengthen and develop capacities of individual states, international organisations and relevant stakeholders to better respond to traditional, non-traditional and new and emerging challenges, including terrorism and its financing, money laundering, misinformation and disinformation”.
During the technical session on AI, talking about the uncharted evolutionary trajectory of Artificial Intelligence, NASA’s Chief Advisor on Artificial Intelligence, Dr. Omar Hatamleh used the term exaptation – “the process by which features acquire functions for which they were not originally adapted or selected.” The G20 too witnessed an exaptation.
This essentially economic bloc, took cognizance of the threats posed by the new and emerging technologies in cyberspace, came together to improve their understanding of the issues, and vowed to address the collective concerns with the sense of urgency it warrants.
Through this initiative under its G20 Presidency, India made cyber security and crime a global priority, sending a clear message that it is committed to making the cyberspace future safe for this One Family that inhabits this One Earth.
FASTER EXTRADITION OF ECONOMIC OFFENDERS
Speaking at the crucial G20 antigraft ministerial meeting in Kolkata on August 12, Union Minister Shri Jitendra Singh underlined that fugitive economic offenders pose a significant challenge to both national and international law enforcement, as they are able to exploit gaps between legal and financial systems of countries to evade justice. He stressed on faster extradition of fugitive economic offenders and recovery of their assets, besides achieving a “corruption-free world.” He said that a whopping $1.8 billion has been recovered and brought back to India from abroad in the past few years.
The union minister pointed out that the “gender aspect of corruption” was deliberated during the meeting and headway has been made in this direction at the behest of India. He said the G20 Anti-Corruption Working Group (ACWG), under India’s presidency, has been successful in building consensus on important issues related to strengthening law enforcement cooperation, information sharing and asset recovery mechanisms.
“We, as the G20, need to be bold in our ambition and work together to address the lacunas in international cooperation to combat corruption. I am sure that G20 members will take concrete steps to implement these principles to enhance the effectiveness of extradition mechanisms, and to facilitate better tracking of crossborder financial flows which will deter fugitive economic offenders,” the minister said.
Shri Jitendra Singh highlighted the work towards the finalisation of the “accountability report” on mutual legal assistance and said its findings and recommendations will be useful in improving and strengthening cooperation between countries in combating transnational crime and maintaining global security.
ENABLING SUSTAINABLE AND RESILIENT BLUE ECONOMY
The two-day G20 Environment and Climate Sustainability Working Group (ECSWG) and Environment and Climate ministers meeting that concluded on July 28 in Chennai adopted a series of “Chennai HighLevel Principles” for a sustainable and resilient blue economy, or oceanbased economy. Officials in the Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change said that the adoption of nine principles will not only help conserve ocean biodiversity, but also address the consequences of climate change on ocean-based economies in the G20.
Blue Economy, which is essentially sustainable and responsible use of ocean resources, has emerged as a critical pathway that combines building a robust economy from the ocean, ensuring environmental conservation, and providing for social equity. The Blue Economy and the conservation of our oceans are mutually inseparable. Healthy oceans are vital to sustain life, provide invaluable ecosystem services that contribute to human well-being and economic prosperity, and are an essential component of a sustainable global economy.
DR. RAMDAS ATHAWALE
HON’BLE MINISTER OF STATE FOR SOCIAL JUSTICE AND EMPOWERMENT, GOVERNMENT OF INDIA
“I extend my heartfelt congratulations to Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi ji for the grand success of the 2023 G20 New Delhi Summit. The Leaders’ Summit under India’s G20 presidency concluded splendidly, marked by the unanimous endorsement of the New Delhi Declaration. Our presidency emphasised the paramount importance of united efforts from not only the G20 member states, but also countries representing the Global South. Throughout its tenure as the G20 president, India has endeavoured to unify countries across the world to formulate a strategy to navigate through multifaceted, intricate, and interlinked challenges with a spirit of unity. Our esteemed Prime Minister has rightly articulated that the G20 Presidency is a collective possession of the entire nation. I extend my congratulations to every citizen on the successful G20 presidency and applaud the commitments and accomplishments it has engendered. My best wishes to AsiaOne Magazine and Mr. Rajat Shukal for coming up with special stories on India’s G20 Presidency.”
With the enhanced use, oceans and seabeds face issues of biodiversity loss, collapse of fisheries and unmanageable marine litter pollution (such as plastics), ocean warming and acidification. Therefore, safeguarding the ocean’s health through responsible policies and practices while harnessing its potential assumes greater significance. By adopting sustainable practices, protecting marine ecosystems, and addressing key challenges such as overfishing, habitat destruction, pollution, and climate change, countries can promote economic growth while ensuring the long-term vitality of Earth’s oceans. Through international collaboration and responsible governance, countries can create a future where a thriving Blue Economy coexists harmoniously with a healthy and resilient marine environment.
The opportunities and challenges related to oceans have been acknowledged and found a place in the 2030 SDG Agenda (SDG 14) and several other UN/Multilateral declarations and agreements, including in the important grouping such as the G20. The unequivocal emphasis on the importance of the Blue Economy has prioritised the protection of biodiversity, implementing responsible practices, and fostering international cooperation.
The G20 nations, all being coastal nations, account for around 45% of the world’s coastline and 21% of the world’s Exclusive Economic Zones. As these countries depend on coastal and marine resources for their livelihoods and economic growth, it is of utmost importance that they play a pivotal role in shaping the future of the Blue Economy.
Previous deliberations in the ECSWG led to the G20 Marine Litter Action Plan (2017, Germany), Osaka Blue Ocean Vision (2019, Japan), and the Mangrove Alliance and Ocean20 Dialogue (2022, Indonesia). Continuing the momentum, and in consonance with the Government of India’s thrust on transforming Blue Economy as an engine of growth, the Indian Presidency accorded high priority to the development of High-Level Principles (HLPs) for ‘Sustainable, Resilient and Inclusive Blue Economy’. These principles recognise that economic growth, conservation of marine resources and welfare of the coastal communities are interwoven and promote equity: social, inter-generational and gender.
Translating the Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi’s vision on Blue Economy, during the last Budget session, the Government of India, adding to the ongoing schemes, launched a new scheme MISHTI (Mangrove Initiative for Shoreline Habitats & Tangible Incomes), along with Amrit Dharohar (conservation of wetlands), and PM Matsya Sampada Yojana (fisheries wealth). The schemes aptly demonstrate that Blue Economy requires an integrated approach that goes beyond economic considerations, and recognises the importance of preserving marine ecosystems, promoting sustainable practices, and ensuring the well-being of coastal communities. Harnessing the potential of the Blue Economy can further create jobs, stimulate economic growth, and provide sustainable solutions to global challenges.
The worldwide ocean economy is valued at around $1.5 trillion per year, and is set to double by 2030 to $3 trillion; the total value of ocean assets (natural capital) has been estimated at $24 trillion. According to the recent estimates, at least $175 billion per year will be needed to achieve SDG 14 by 2030, especially given the impact of COVID-19 and other recent setbacks. The G20 nations can foster cooperation, shape policies, and drive innovation, paving the way for a prosperous and ecologically balanced ‘One Earth, One Family, One Future.
H.E. DR. CHRISTINA RAHM
FOUNDER – DRC VENTURES AND CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD & CHIEF FORMULATOR, THE ROOT BRANDS, USA
“I believe in One World, One Family, and One Organisation that can really guide us as long as we are doing it the right way. I am not for depopulation; I am for trying to create the energy so we can collectively live together and have better lives, and not just for us, but for our children. I don’t worry about food because I understand that if we can start by remediating and cleaning the land, air and water, and then cleaning people, we can survive as a species and not only can we survive, we can thrive. We can create better food; we can create better energy; we can create better lives through what we are doing. I believe that God gave us the knowledge to be able to create and survive despite pandemics, economic crises, energy crises, and wars. We have the ability to work together and to collectively bring light and positive energy not just for the wealthy people, but for everyone, because we are all here to help each other. We can solve world problems if we work together. At the Root Brands and DRC Ventures, we are really hoping to be part of this positive change.”
YOGA FOR VASUDHAIVA KUTUMBAKAM
The world paused to take a deep breath on June 21 as we celebrated the 9th International Day of Yoga. Nine years after his clarion call for Yoga at the United Nations General Assembly, Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi returned to New York and led the session commemorating the International Day of Yoga at the UN Headquarters.
With over 2,000 enthusiasts participating in the session led by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, a new Guinness World Record was also created on June 21 for the participation from most nationalities. At this momentous occasion, PM Modi called upon the world to “use the power of Yoga to build bridges of friendship, a peaceful world, and a cleaner, greener and sustainable future.”
Yoga caters to the physical, spiritual, and mental well-being of a person, which makes it a holistic solution to the multifaceted aspects of health.
In 2014, when he addressed the 69th session of the United Nations General Assembly, PM Modi had urged the international community to adopt an International Yoga Day – the invaluable gift of India’s ancient tradition. Within 75 days, the proposal was accepted with a resounding consensus. Since then, millions have adopted Yoga – the symphony of body and mind as a part of their daily lives. As we face numerous challenges in today’s fast-paced world, Yoga allows us to reclaim a space for ourselves within us free from the stress and pressures of the world.
As part of the G20 meetings, delegates have had the opportunity to attend beneficial Yoga sessions, including sessions in Rishikesh, Uttarakhand, the ‘Yoga Capital of the World’. Yoga sessions were incorporated between meetings as well to demonstrate how it can be a viable solution to sedentary lifestyles. From early-morning sessions along the beautiful white sands of Rann of Kutch to rejuvenating sessions in the lush alpine greenery of Srinagar, Yoga was an integral part of G20 meetings across the country.
Yoga teaches us to live in peace and harmony with ourselves, others, and with nature. Hence, Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi’s insistence on working towards “genuine peace, inclusive global development, and a sustainable world” was only fitting when he proposed International Yoga Day to the UN.
Lifestyle for Environment (LiFE) is another key priority of India’s G20 Presidency. India’s respect for nature is an integral part of our spiritualism and the country treats nature’s bounties as sacred. By changing lifestyles and creating a collective consciousness, humans are better equipped to deal with global challenges such as climate change.
A global challenge where Yoga can help tremendously is mental health. The World Health Organization (WHO) last year said that the COVID-19 pandemic triggered a 25% increase in the prevalence of anxiety and depression worldwide. Yogic meditation is renowned for its remarkable ability to substantially alleviate stress, a pervasive issue impacting millions of people globally.
In his address to the joint session of the US Congress, PM Modi said India lives by the motto of ‘The World is One Family,’ and a key aspect of this is ‘One Earth, One Health,’ which is a vision for global action to bring quality healthcare to everyone. Today, as the world looks for solutions to stress and lifestyle diseases, the country offers its ancient wisdom in the form of Yoga to fill the vacuum for a healthier ‘One Future’.
DR. HEMA DIVAKAR
CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER AND CHAIRPERSON, ARTIST
“As the largest democracy in the world, and the fastest growing economy, India’s G20 presidency will play a crucial role in building upon the significant achievements of the previous 17 presidencies. We as healthcare professionals seek to play an important role by finding pragmatic global solutions for the well-being of all. Being inspired by technology transformation, we at ‘ARTIST for Her’ have declared our mission of transforming women’s healthcare through digital skill transfer. The initiatives will use technology for spreading awareness on preventive healthcare to the community, building capacity of frontline healthcare providers to deliver quality care, and providing affordable healthcare through teleconsultations to the last mile, reaching every girl, every woman. Since we believe that “Women’s Health s Nation’s Wealth,” all these steps taken will accelerate progress towards the SDGs and secure a better future for generations to come.”
TECHEQUITY, FOR WOMEN’S TRANSITION AND PROGRESSION
A digital inclusion platform developed and launched under India’s G20 Presidency, TechEquity would be of value and use for women around the world in education and subsequently as an enabler for transition and progression in careers, particularly in STEM. The platform has been designed to enable women from across the world to educate and upskill themselves on digital literacy, financial literacy and technical areas through training programs and resources provided on the platform. With courses being submitted by G20 members and guest countries, it is envisaged that these courses will be available in 120 international and Indian languages. The platform envisions an outreach of 1 million users internationally.
TechEquity was launched at the G20 EMPOWER Summit in Gandhinagar, Gujarat, on August 1, 2023. Open for registration, it will be free for women to use. It will collate best-in-class courses on digital and financial literacy, tech skill development and core skill enhancement. The platform – to be funded by India for the next three years – will be maintained by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry.
The digital inclusion platform seeks to bridge the gender digital divide and will impact 2 to 3 million women across the globe over the next year.
DR. SATYA VADLAMANI
CHAIRPERSON AND MANAGING DIRECTOR, MURALI KRISHNA PHARMA PVT. LTD.
“This year, G20 has come to India. Its theme is One Earth, One Family, One Future. In India, we say this as Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam. And that is exactly where India comes in from. I think we have completed in more than 40 cities, more than 100 meetings of G20. As a platform to address global issues, it has been aligned towards women thought leaders, conservation, and sustainability. We have some top thought leaders in India who are working on all these areas. Healthcare is one of the key areas for the world, especially for women. Sustainability and energy conservation have also been a major focus of discussion worldwide. We, at Murali Krishna Pharma, are working on sustainability, saving energy, and conservation. Primarily, we work on Go Green. We are an aqueous company. When you talk about aqueous, you do not talk about solvents. When you do not use solvents, you do not create seepage into the earth. So, you are actually saving the earth.”
KASI CULTURAL PATHWAY
Launched in Varanasi by Union Minister for Tourism and Culture, Shri G. Kishan Reddy on August 26, the ‘Kasi Cultural Pathway’ focuses on restoring the glory of heritage structures and ensuring the return of cultural and heritage artefacts to countries from where they were taken by others.
The Kasi Cultural Pathway plan emerged from discussions among member countries on the implementation of decisions taken in the previous Rome and Bali Declarations. “The G20 group unanimously agreed to adopt the plan,” Shri Reddy said.
RESOURCE EFFICIENCY CIRCULAR ECONOMY INDUSTRY COALITION
The Resource Efficiency Circular Economy Industry Coalition (RECEIC) was launched on the sidelines of the 4th G20 Environment and Climate Sustainability Working Group (ECSWG) and Environment and Climate Ministers meeting in Chennai on July 27, 2023. The industry-led coalition on resource efficiency and circular economy has the potential to transform aspirations into concrete actions, said Union Minister of Environment, Forest, and Climate Change, Shri Bhupender Yadav.
A first-of-its kind initiative for creating a global coalition to encourage resource efficiency and a circular economy by uniting nations, industries, and experts, the industry. ed, independent, and self-sustaining RECEIC has 35 founding members and covers diverse sectors like chemicals, waste management, textiles, beverages, FMCG, cement, steel, and automotive. The coalition’s objective is to unite nations, industries, and experts in their endeavour to propel the global circularity agenda forward.
The mission of this coalition is to facilitate and foster greater companyto-company collaboration, build advanced capabilities across sectors and value chains, bring learnings from diverse and global experiences of the coalition members, and unlock on-ground private sector action to enhance resource efficiency, and accelerate circular economy transition. It is structured around the three guiding pillars of partnerships for impact, technology cooperation, and finance for scale. It also aims to contribute towards progress on key global goals and priorities set by the G20 and other international fora.
In due course of time, RECEIC may be invited to the G20 Resource Efficiency Dialogue, for annual convenings as well as sharing their experiences with the G20, and highlighting success factors to enhance resource efficiency and circular economy. It will also act as an overarching platform enabling industries to address information gaps and coordination challenges across the G20 members.
In the long run, the RECEIC would play a vital role in promoting alliances, encouraging technological cooperation and knowledge transfer, fostering innovation, and facilitating the exchange of insights to enhance access to finance. The Union Environment Minister acknowledged the commitment of the 39 founding members of RECEIC to step forward to join this coalition.
At the country level, India has proactively taken policy actions to drive the Resource Efficiency and Circular Economy agenda by imposing a ban on single use plastics, setting up a task force to promote Green Steel, mandate on using biomass pellets at coal PPs, and development of Green Credits. Its prominent initiatives to support a sustainable and resilient Blue Economy include Deep Ocean Mission, which aims at exploring deep ocean resources and climate change advisory services, Coastal Marine Spatial Planning, and Mangrove Initiative for Shoreline Habitats and Tangible Incomes.
GLOBAL INITIATIVE ON DIGITAL HEALTH
India, along with the WHO, launched the Global Initiative on Digital Health (GIDH) on 19 August at the G20 Health Ministers’ meeting in Gandhinagar, Gujarat. This framework aims to converge the global efforts for digital health and scale up digital solutions with use of cutting-edge technologies. Fostering collaboration among nations and organisations to realise this transformative vision, the initiative will support the WHO global strategy on digital health and amplify other initiatives, including the WHO Global Digital Health Certification Network.
The new GIDH initiative (pronounced “guide” for short) will operate as a WHO-managed network and platform to support the implementation of the Global Strategy on Digital Health 2020-2025. WHO serves as the Secretariat for the strategy implementation to converge and convene global standards, best practices, and resources to fast-track digital health system transformation.
“We thank the G20 countries and the India G20 Presidency for recognising WHO’s unique role and strengths in this area and supporting the establishment of the new GIDH network,” said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General. “Continued support and collaboration of the G20, development partners and international organisations will be necessary to accomplish together what none of us can do alone. WHO is committed to working with countries to strengthen their capacities and to improve access to quality-assured digital solutions for a healthier, safer, fairer future.”
The GIDH initiative aims to bring countries and partners together to achieve measurable outcomes by developing clear priority-driven investment plans for digital health transformation; improving reporting and transparency of digital health resources; facilitating knowledge exchange and collaboration across regions and countries to accelerate progress; supporting whole-ofgovernment approaches for digital health governance in countries; and increasing technical and financial support to the implementation of the Global Strategy on Digital Health 2020-2025 and its next phase.
Over 100 musicians from G20 countries dazzled the audience with an orchestral performance in Varanasi on August 26. The performance, Sur Vasudha by the G20 Orchestra was put together under India’s G20 presidency to mark the closing of the Culture Ministers’ Meeting in the city.
The orchestra, consisting of 101 musicians from 29 G20 member and invitee countries, celebrated the musical traditions with diverse instruments and vocalists singing in their native languages. The cast featured 61 musicians and vocalists from India, and 40 musicians and vocalists from G20 nations and invitee countries. The artists brought their traditional musical instruments, and played in perfect harmony in the ancient city of music, Benares. A scintillating performance, a Brazilian conga, a Scottish bagpipe, Italian violins, an English flute, and the French horn played in symphony with Indian mridangam, shehnai, sarangi, and sitar.
MR. PRAMOD SAJJA
PRESIDENT AND CEO, FARM TO PLATE LLC. & PARAMOUNT SOFTWARE SOLUTIONS INC.
“The G20 Summit in New Delhi this year was more consequential than others in recent years. We are at a complex juncture in world politics today, with the polarisation of countries towards the West and the East, war in the Ukraine and resulting economic strains creating a difficult environment for leaders across the world. At such a time, the G20 Summit and by extension, India’s leadership, came at an opportune time. The summit achieved some great successes for global trade and sustainability – I particularly liked the group’s commitment in the Declaration towards fulfilling the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals Agenda, as well as the promise to work towards closing the gender gap. Another milestone achievement, I would say, was bringing the African Union into the G20. Last but not least – the launch of the IMEC will herald a new era of trade and sustainable development all the way for South Asia, the Middle East, Europe and the US. As a supply chain technology leader, I see the G20 as an endorsement of Paramount’s vision for a safer, faster and more transparent global supply chain.”
The opening piece of the enthralling concert, Sur Vasudha that introduced the audience to all the sounds of the G20 orchestra was followed by the piece Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam (the World is One Family), where 29 languages and cultural imprints from different countries merged into a river of symphonic choir. Each vocalist, wearing their traditional costumes, sang Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam in his or her own language in unison. The musicians included a group from the Chennai Strings Orchestra, a Türkiye performer playing the traditional instrument ‘qanun,’ a Dutch musician playing a harp, and a host of international vocalists and musicians. Vocalists from G20 countries, Brazil, China, Japan, Mexico, Argentina, Russia, and Canada, among others, added to the musical atmosphere heightened by beautiful stagecraft that also sought to imitate the ghats of Ganga in Varanasi.
The six pieces in sequence were Sur Vasudha, Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam, One Earth, One Family, One Future, and Continuum.
The last piece of the concert marked the continuity of the G20, as India handed over the presidency of the bloc to Brazil. Union Minister Shri Arjun Ram Meghwal and Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Shri Yogi Adityanath handed over the ceremonial baton to the performers from Brazil on stage during the function.\
MR. CHINTAN PATEL
MANAGING DIRECTOR, DEESAN GROUP
“Great Achievement of the Government of India to preside over G20. Delegations from G20 countries are meeting in various cities & states. So, they will be aware of progress India has made which may result in more investments, large numbers of tourists; may generate more employment opportunities. Our group is working on sustainability, technology upgradation and waste recycling with waste reduction. Ever since, we started a textile manufacturing, we have paid full attention on sustainability. We started large project of water haresting, free education to poor children, solar power installation, reduction in use of water in processing use of Agro waste in Boiler etc. The Shirpur Pattern project is a water conservation project is highly recognised for its sustainable irrigation, increase cropping, and minimising soil erosion. Similarly, most of the company’s operations are powered by solar energy thereby enabling us to reduce carbon footprints.”
CELEBRATION OF INDIAN CULTURE
India’s G20 Presidency, under the guidance of Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR), orchestrated over 300 cultural programs featuring more than 17,000 artists across over 60 locations within the country. The endeavour allowed India to spotlight its diverse cultural heritage, including performing arts, visual arts, heritage sites, and culinary traditions, demonstrating the nation’s cultural richness and promoting cross-cultural understanding among G20 member nations.
During 2023, historical events were hosted in every state and union territory of India, providing each region with a unique opportunity to showcase its cultural treasures and traditions. Beyond cultural diplomacy, India’s G20 presidency also emphasised its economic potential, especially in cultural and tourism sectors, elevating the country’s global stature.
The G20 University Connect initiative, a part of this presidency, aimed to bolster awareness of India’s G20 leadership among the nation’s youth and encourage their active participation in various G20 events.
To document these initiatives, Prime Minister Narendra Modi unveiled four books highlighting the accomplishments of India’s G20 presidency. The book launch took place at the G20 University Connect Finale at Bharat Mandapam in New Delhi on September 26, 2023.
One of the books, titled Showcasing Indian Culture at G-20, provides an insightful glimpse into the rich tapestry of Indian culture that was presented to the G20 delegates throughout the country during India’s presidency. Three other publications were, The Grand Success of G20 Bharat Presidency: Visionary Leadership, Inclusive Approach, India’s G20 Presidency: Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam, and Compendium of G20 University Connect Programme.
These books are now accessible to the public on the G20 India website and can also be downloaded as ebooks via the G20 India application.
According to Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, G20 events have introduced India’s capabilities, diversity to the world. In his address to the nation on the 77th Independence Day, he also said that India’s small towns may be small in size or population, but in having hopes and aspirations, they are “not less than anyone.” He also asserted that the country is becoming a “voice of the Global South.”
“Today, India is getting an opportunity to host the world for G20 events. And, in the last one year, the way G20 events have been held in various corners of the country, has introduced the capabilities of India to the world, and introduced the diversity of India to the world,” PM Modi said.
Recalling his visit to Bali, PM Modi said even leaders of developed nations were eager to know about Digital India. “I told them that this wonder is not just limited to Mumbai and Chennai, youths of even tier-2 and tier-3 cities are helping shape the destiny of India,” he said, adding that new apps, new solutions, and technology devices are being developed by youths from across the country.
The ethos of ‘Jan Bhagidari’ (or broad-based public participation in governance) has underpinned the Indian Presidency’s efforts to take the G20 and its ideas to the sections of youth, women, businesses, and civil society, he said. The 11 engagement groups of G20, academia, civil society, youth, women, parliamentarians, entrepreneurs, and people associated with urban administration played an important role in the success of the presidency. In one way or the other, more than 1.5 crore people have been associated with G20 events across the country, the Prime Minister added.
“In this effort of ours for public participation, not one, but two world records have been created. The participation of 1.25 lakh students from 800 schools in the G20 Quiz held in Varanasi became a new world record. At the same time, Lambani artisans also did wonders; 450 artisans have showcased their skill and craftsmanship by creating an amazing collection of around 1,800 ‘Unique Patches’,” PM Modi said.
Those who came for G20 events were amazed to see the artistic diversity of India, he noted. The Prime Minister said one such grand programme was organised in Surat where 15,000 women from 15 states participated in a ‘Saree Walkathon’. This programme not only gave a boost to Surat’s textile industry, but ‘Vocal for Local’ also got a fillip and paved the way for ‘Local to become Global.’ He said that after the G20 meeting in Srinagar, a huge increase in the number of tourists to Kashmir is being seen.
DR. P. SHYAMA RAJU
CHANCELLOR, REVA UNIVERSITY
“REVA has aligned with G20 presidency right from the time the announcements of G20 presidency were made. The G20 Summit theme, — One Earth, One Family, One Future, which is on the principles of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam — has been the key to all our activities at REVA. The spirit of the NEP 2020 has already begun gaining momentum at REVA. Keeping the theme of G20 in mind, REVA went ahead and hosted in several states, a dance performance by the REVA School of Performing Arts and Indic Studies called Pancavaktram. The production blended perfectly with the Indian Knowledge System of the NEP and the theme of the G20 summit. Thereafter, at the campus, REVA hosted, Khel Khoj, a new way to play traditional games in limited spaces. This was our effort to revive the indigenous games of India. REVA University is responding to G20 Presidency by promoting links between universities and the environment in a sustainable, holistic, responsible and inclusive manner.”
BHARAT MANDAPAM: A UNIQUE VENUE FOR A UNIQUE G20 PRESIDENCY
A star feature of India’s G20 presidency was Bharat Mandapam, the venue of the grand leaders’ summit in New Delhi.
On July 26, 2023, Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi dedicated the refurbished Pragati Maidan complex, Bharat Mandapam, to the nation. An architectural masterpiece, the destination finds its place among the top exhibition and convention complexes in the world. It has several fascinating features – the prime being an impressive fusion of the traditional and the modern. It has sculptures, installations, murals, paintings, and tribal art forms from different regions of the country to give a glimpse of India’s rich cultural heritage. The shape of the Convention Centre resembles a shankha (conch shell). The complex is also equipped with modern facilities such as 5G-enabled fully Wi-Fi-covered campus, 10G Intranet connectivity, interpretation rooms equipped with cutting-edge technology to support 16 languages, among many others.
Bharat Mandapam is inspired by the ‘Anubhav Mandapam’ of Bhagwan Basaveshwara, often referred to as the first Parliament of the world, and represents a democratic platform for debates, discussions, and expression of ideas. Therefore, while inaugurating this unique marvel of New India, PM Modi weighed in on its symbolic value. “As we celebrate Amrit Mahotsav on 75 years of independence, ‘Bharat Mandapam’ stands as a beautiful gift from us, the Indians, to our democracy,” he said.
Its multi-purpose hall and plenary hall have a combined capacity of 7,000 people, making it even larger than the seating capacity of Australia’s iconic Sydney Opera House. It has been built on the vision of a perfect destination to host large-scale international exhibitions, trade fairs, conventions, conferences, and other prestigious events. The complex has the provision of over 5,500 vehicle parking spaces, with ease of access ensured through signal-free roads for the convenience of visitors.
To G20 Chief Coordinator Mr. Harsh Vardhan Shringla, a venue of this stature equipped with advanced facilities is a fitting destination to host the culmination of India’s “ambitious” Presidency at the G20 Leaders’ Summit in New Delhi.
“A defining feature of India’s G20 Presidency has been the unmatched scale and spread of the meetings organised throughout the country. Our Prime Minister had envisioned taking G20 meetings to every part of the country to showcase India’s cultural diversity and tourism potential to the world, and resultantly, the G20 has reached more than 50 cities of India. This noble venture made each and every Indian an active participant in India’s G20 Presidency. But also, quite significantly, these meetings led to enormous developmental activities in the host cities as new facilities were built in many cities for G20 meetings and old facilities were modernised. This approach has made our G20 a truly People’s G20, taking inspiration from our Prime Minister’s commitment to make India developed by following the spirit of “Nation First, Citizen First,” Mr. Shringla said.
To PM Modi, Bharat Mandapam is a call for India’s capabilities and new energy of the nation, “it is a philosophy of India’s grandeur and willpower,” he said at the launch of the complex. While dedicating the marvel of engineering, architecture, and tradition to Indians, he gave Indians the mantra of “Think Big, Dream Big, Act Big.”
DR. MINNIE BODHANWALA
CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, WADIA HOSPITALS
“My visionary aspirations lay a profound long-term objective of fostering an affordable and universally accessible healthcare landscape, steadfastly upholding unwavering standards of quality and treatment. Aligned with the esteemed vision of India’s G20 Presidency, my endeavour is to forge a comprehensive framework that mitigates disparities in healthcare availability across the globe, fostering a future where the doors of healing remain open to all, regardless of their origins or circumstances. My vision is not just limited to providing easily accessible and affordable quality healthcare, but also on the well-being of all which includes social and emotional wellbeing. Similarly, being a proponent to leverage digital technologies to improve access to health services, I am also supporting it by providing various digital tools, through my hospitals, to expand access to health services in remote and underserved areas. My focus is on providing value-based healthcare system to all.”
CULTURE CORRIDOR – G20 DIGITAL MUSEUM
Among the Government of India’s major plans for the G20 Leadership Summit in New Delhi was the G20 Digital Museum that had at least one key artifact or its digital replica from all member nations and the nine guest countries. The project was unveiled during the mega congregation. Aligned with India’s G20 theme ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’ and the Culture Working Group’s (CWG) flagship campaign ‘Culture Unites All,’ the Culture Corridor was inaugurated on September 9, 2023.
A manuscript of the Ashtadhyayi, composed by the renowned Indian grammarian Panini in the 5th-6th century BCE, showcased the science of Vedic phonetics and grammar, anticipating computer programming by over two millennia. The other attractions included Batik Sarong Textiles (Indonesia), a model of the National Parliament Palace (Brazil), a handmade Poncho (Argentina), Sea Monster Transformation Mask (Canada), Fahua Lidded Jar With Lotus Pond Design (China), Marie Skłodowska-Curie statue (European Union), Auxerre Vase With Blue Background (France), VW Beetle Miniature Models (Germany), Belvedere Apollo (Italy), Nendoroid Hatsune Miku figurine (Japan), the Artisan-Crafted Hat, Gat and Headpiece (Republic of Korea), Sculpture of Duality: Quetzalcoatl and Tlaltecuhtli (Mexico), Traditional Khakass Women’s Dress (Russia), a cast of Australopithecus Africanus (Mrs. Ples), Göbekli Tepe Stele (Turkiye), a full-size colour reproduction of the entire original document, Magna Carta (United Kingdom), Tyranny of Mirrors painting (USA), and a bust of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman (Bangladesh), among others.
It was a ‘phygital’ museum, which refers to the idea of having a museum that will have both physical and digital components. The museum from CWG came after Sur Vasudha, a special G20 orchestra.
The Union Ministry of Culture also worked on several other projects as part of G20 engagements, which also included a ‘G20 Anthology of Poems – Under the Same Sky’. India sought poems from G20 member nations as part of the G20 Anthology of Poems project.
PM Modi’s vision of ‘Virasat Bhi, Vikas Bhi’ was showcased during these meetings. “Heritage is a vital asset for economic growth and diversification,” he said at the G20 Culture Ministers’ Meeting.
KEY BILATERAL MEETINGS
Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi engaged in a series of bilateral meetings with world leaders on the sidelines of the 2023 New Delhi G20 Summit. He symbolically handed over the G20 presidential gavel to Brazilian President Mr. Lula, expressing confidence in India’s successor to promote global unity and prosperity. The leaders also held a bilateral meeting, where they agreed to work together for the expansion of India-MERCOSUR Preferential Trade Agreement during Brazil’s MERCOSUR Presidency, to leverage the full potential of their economic partnership.
partnership. In another bilateral meeting, PM Modi and his Bangladesh counterpart Ms. Sheikh Hasina signed three MoUs, one on cooperation in Digital Payment mechanisms, second on the renewal of the Cultural Exchange Program (CEP) between India and Bangladesh for 2023-2025, and the third on agricultural cooperation.
The Prime Minister of India met his Dutch counterpart Mr. Mark Rutte to talk about ways to enhance friendship between the two nations and widen the scope of cooperation for businesses in the areas of clean energy, semiconductors, and digital technology, among others.
PM Modi’s meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Mr. Fumio Kishida focused on global food security, which has been affected by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, as well as development, digital transformation and other international issues. The Prime Minister of India also discussed the enhancement of trade and infrastructure relations with Türkiye President Mr. Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.
World leaders attending the two-day G20 summit hailed Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi for his decisive leadership and for championing the voice of the Global South. Russia praised the G20 Summit under India’s presidency as a “breakthrough,” underlining its outcomes as a roadmap for addressing global challenges and showcasing the strength and importance of the Global South. Several other world leaders at the G20 Summit congratulated PM Modi on the success of Chandrayaan-3. The Japanese Prime Minister commended his Indian counterpart for the “Mission LiFE” concept. European Commission President Ms. Ursula von der Leyen advocated for the creation of a new global framework for addressing artificial intelligence risks, emphasising the importance of safeguarding society and encouraging responsible AI investments.
MR. VSN RAJU
CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, COEMPT EDUTECK PVT. LTD.
“Coempt EduTeck Pvt. Ltd. (COEMPT) operates in education sector. We are making our small contribution in transforming education by empowering educational institutions in India with robust technology enabled examination solutions and user-friendly platforms that they can use to break away from traditional and erroneous means of assessing students. Our digital tools and user-friendly platforms help educational institutions to efficiently assess students in their academics and provide transparency to all stakeholders, be it students, teachers or parents. The solutions have been developed using the latest technology that reduces barriers and help us to easily expand across geographies. COEMPT is keen to collaborate with academic institutions, policymakers, and other stakeholders across nations to conduct research, pilot innovative solutions, and share best practices that advance the objectives of the G20 2023 agenda. Edutech companies like ours are poised to play a significant role in contributing to achieve the G20 objective.”
In a nutshell, the 18th G20 Summit in New Delhi proved to be a monumental gathering, quite possibly the most extensive in the annals of G20 history. With participation from over 30 heads of State/Government, this summit delved into topics of global relevance, transcending beyond the confines of the G20 nations, and thus, fully embodying the spirit of this year’s G20 theme: ‘One Earth, One Family, One Future.’
The G20 New Delhi Leaders’ Declaration aptly reflected India’s proposed priorities, with a particular emphasis on integrating the Global South into the G20, fostering inclusive and human-centric development, advocating for climate preservation models centered on ‘just transition’, and pioneering a new approach to financial inclusion for developing nations. The declaration was the culmination of India’s adept diplomacy, skillfully navigating through numerous differences and divergent viewpoints.
Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has suggested hosting a virtual G20 session towards the end of November to assess the recommendations and resolutions put forth during the leaders’ summit in New Delhi.