The G20 (or Group of Twenty) is an international forum for the governments and central bank governors from 19 countries and the European Union (EU). Founded in 1999 with the aim to discuss policy pertaining to the promotion of international financial stability, the G20 has expanded its agenda since 2008 and heads of government or heads of state, as well as finance ministers and foreign ministers, have periodically conferred at summits ever since. It seeks to address issues that go beyond the responsibilities of any one organization.
Membership of the G20 consists of 19 individual countries plus the European Union. The EU is represented by the European Commission and by the European Central Bank. Collectively, the G20 economies account for around 90% of the gross world product (GWP), 80% of world trade (or, if excluding EU intra-trade, 75%), two-thirds of the world population, and approximately half of the world land area.
With the G20 growing in stature after its inaugural leaders’ summit in 2008, its leaders announced on 25 September 2009 that the group would replace the G8 as the main economic council of wealthy nations. Since its inception, the G20’s membership policies have been criticized by some intellectuals, and its summits have been a focus for major protests by left-wing groups and anarchists.
The heads of the G20 nations held summits twice in 2009 and twice in 2010. Since the November 2011 Cannes summit, G20 summits have been held annually
Saudi G20 Sherpa Dr. Fahad Al-Mubarak briefed the United Nations General Assembly on the G20 Presidency Agenda and priorities in 2020. In his address, Al-Mubarak said Saudi Arabia would strive to build consensus and deliver concrete results on issues that are critical for all people of the world. In an informal session, attended by representatives from the UN member states, Al-Mubarak presented the theme, aims and main priorities during the Saudi Presidency of the Summit.
At the outset of the session, the UN General Assembly President and UN Undersecretary General welcomed the Saudi Sherpa and looked forward to a successful G20 Summit in Riyadh. Before giving a broad overview of the agenda, the Sherpa emphasized the links among the Saudi G20 program, the UN’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and the Kingdom’s Vision 2030. He highlighted that, under the guidance of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman and Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman, the 2020 G20 Agenda development process was conducted in an inclusive and comprehensive way in order to reflect the issues that are extremely significant for the entire world.
On the main objectives of the Summit, he said that under the theme of the Summit, titled Realizing Opportunities of the 21st Century for All.
During the briefing session, Al-Mubarak also presented the priorities that will be at the center of the G20 discussions under the Saudi G20 Presidency and gave details about the global challenges that the G20 countries can address jointly to achieve economic growth and sustainable development. Since many of the challenges before us are global in nature, no country can effectively address them alone, he said, adding, We have a shared interest and a shared responsibility to work together to realize opportunities of the 21st century for all.
Participants at the FWG symposium also discussed the role of the public and private sectors in leveraging technology and innovation to create jobs, and opportunities that promote sustainable and inclusive growth. The G20 FWG was established at the 2009 Pittsburgh summit in the US after world leaders agreed to launch a framework to lay out policies aimed at generating strong, sustainable, balanced, and inclusive global growth.
Women to represent 33% of G20 participants in Riyadh. B20 Saudi Arabia will also address challenges in digitization, energy, sustainability and climate, finance and infrastructure, future of work and education, trade and investment and finally integrity and compliance.
The aim of B20 in Saudi Arabia is to ensure that the voice of a global business is heard and addressed by the G20 leaders. To do this, we need B20 Saudi Arabia intended to be inclusive, impactable and for sure differentiate.
Writer is the CEO of Mélange IT Solutions & The Asian Telegraph, an expert on Political Economy, & Director of Bandial Group