March 31, 2023

General Studies Paper 2


  • India has taken over the G20 presidency. The motto “Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam”, or “One Earth, One Family, One Future”, underscores how interconnected our world is.


  • The G20 is an informal group:19 countries and the European Union, with representatives of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.
  • The G20 Presidency rotates annually: according to a system that ensures a regional balance over time.
  • For the selection of the presidency19 countries are divided into 5 groups, each having no more than 4 countries.
    • The presidency rotates between each group.
  • Every year the G20 selects a country from another group to be president.
    • India is in Group 2 which also has Russia, South Africa, and Turkey.
  • The G20 does not have a permanent secretariat or Headquarters.

Current Issues:

  • The global food, energy, and financial crises
  • Climatic crisis
  • Developing countries: are facing an extended, multi-faceted shock of great magnitude.

Priorities identified by India:

  • Green development, climate finance and LiFE (lifestyle for environment)
  • Accelerated, inclusive and resilient growth
  • Accelerating progress on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
  • Technological transformation and digital public infrastructure
  • Multilateral reforms
  • Women-led development.

Problems that need group action:

  • Problems that South Asian countries face are global in nature, transcend national borders, and necessitate group effort.
  • In August 2022, inflation in Sri Lanka reached an all-time high
  • Damage caused by floods and economic losses in Pakistan amount to more than $30 billion.
  • Global fossil fuel prices have increased: The Government of Bangladesh hiked fuel prices by more than 50% that triggered inflation of 5(seven point five)%.

Steps India need to take:

  • India needs to promote collective action at the G20 that results in economic stability and peace in the region.
  • India is South Asia’s largest country with the largest economy and significant global clout
    • India is well poised to represent the subcontinent at these international fora.
  • India can draw attention to issues that are significant for South Asia and the entire developing world, ensuring greater momentum for those nations not represented in the G20.

Some of the key challenges facing South Asia and the developing world:

  • Post-pandemic recovery
  • Surge in commodity prices following inflationary pressures
  • Inclement weather induced by climate change.

Steps taken by South Asian countries:

  • Liquefied natural gas (LNG) used to generate 70% of the energy needs of Bangladesh, while coal used to generate roughly 70% of the electricity needed in India.
  • Green energy transition is one of the top priorities for this region.
  • Improving health infrastructure is quite important for South Asia and the G20 agenda.

Way Forward

  • Rising debt burdens of South Asian economies represent a potential crisis that requires urgent attention.
    • India has an opportunity to effectively voice the socio-economic aspirations of South Asia’s.
  • The discussion of global cooperation needs to go beyond technology transfers and financial aid to cover losses and damages brought on by climate change.
  • For South Asia: It is important that multilateral organizations and development finance institutes supporting economic development and good governance are reformed as these countries are major stakeholders for these global institutes.
  • India needs to prioritize all issues of South Asia not only to make the G20 an effective platform but also to be the voice of billions in the region and beyond.
  • Being the only G20 member from South Asia, India has added responsibilities since many non-G20 nations (particularly those in the global South) look upon India to represent their interests at the G20.
  • India should use its G20 chair to reform international governance procedures and ensure fair negotiations.
  • The South Asian giant has an opportunity to initiate deliberations,discussions, and debates, resulting in policies that provide pragmatic solutions to pressing concerns affecting its immediate neighborhood and beyond.
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