Focus on developing countries and global south: G20 Sherpa Amitabh Kant

India Monday proposed dovetailing climate action with sustainable development, making a clear bid to bring issues facing the emerging economies and the global south in sharp focus at the G20.

Kickstarting the discussions at the first meeting of G20 Sherpas under India’s presidency in Udaipur, India’s Sherpa Amitabh Kant pitched for working together through hope, harmony and healing to deal with the global challenges, with a focus on developing countries and the global south whose voice is often unheard.

He highlighted India’s initiatives such as Aadhaar, Unified Payments Interface (UPI) and direct benefit transfer that have helped lift a vast population above the poverty line.

Kant said India’s G20 Presidency will seek to advocate the priorities of the developing countries and the global south in addition to that of the partners of the grouping. “Our perspective is that we should have a win-win collaboration between all of us, developing countries, the global south, and advanced economies.”
“We need to build new approaches; this is a unique form of both the developed world and emerging economies. We need to build approaches to benefit the world on key global issues,” he said.

Kant said the issue notes on 13 working groups have already been circulated among the participants. The notes address concerns such as accelerated, inclusive and resilient growth, accelerating progress on sustainable development goals, particularly health and education, climate finance, technological transformation and digital public infrastructure.

“The Sherpas expressed strong support for India’s presidency and for the priorities that have been outlined. They felt that these priorities were not just ours but that of everybody. They felt that there was a pressing need to act on some of these important priorities,” India’s G20 Coordinator Harsh Vardhan Shringla told reporters after the discussions.

Shringla said India’s objective was to present its narrative on the global agenda and highlight developmental achievements, tourism potential and cultural heritage.

“Our priorities should become the global priorities. That is a substantive part of it,” he said.

On issues such as climate finance, food supply security, and energy prices, Shringla said these were the goals of every country and G20 can come together and do something about it.

An overview of the finance track and India’s priorities were presented to all delegates by Ajay Seth, secretary, Department of Economic Affairs, ministry of finance.

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