Sonipat (Haryana) [India], April 17 (ANI/OP Jindal University): G20 Presidency of India aims for inclusive, resilient and sustainable growth, Amitabh Kant, G 20 Sherpa of India said at the Distinguished Public Lecture entitled: 'India's Presidency of G20: The Way Forward' to mark the inauguration of the Jindal Global Centre for G20 Studies at O.P. Jindal Global University (JGU).
Amitabh Kant dwelt on a wide-ranging overview outlining India's political and development narratives, key priorities, initiatives to reshape and reconfigure the world and how India is planning to execute the meetings for G20 ahead of the Leaders' Summit in September 2023.
"G20 is important because it comprises of about 85 per cent of the global GDP and about 78 per cent of the global trade, 90 per cent of the patents in the world and nearly two-thirds of the global population. The G20 Presidency moves from one country to another every year and different countries have different perspectives and priorities. It is very important to study, examine and analyse this as G20 is essentially an economic group for development and growth. Therefore, the Jindal Global Centre for G20 Studies at O.P. Jindal Global University is key to understanding how each country managed the issues and challenges facing the G20 Community. The Centre will bring in academic rigour and insight and the G20 Secretariat will be delighted to reflect on the outcome of these deliberations." He congratulated JGU on emerging as India's top-most private university and it position in international rankings.
"This is a period of great upheaval and turbulence across the world. The post-Covid era has seen nearly 200 million people fall below the poverty line. Nearly two decades of work done to alleviate poverty has been eliminated while a third of the world is facing recession. There's a challenge with almost 75 countries in the world facing a global debt crisis. And on top of all this, there's a huge challenge of climate action and climate finance. There is a geopolitical crisis in Europe right now with a war going on for over a year and in addition to all this, you've seen the financial crisis or the Silicon Valley Bank collapses in the United States of America and the cascading impact that you can have in other parts of the world."
Providing a vision and way forward, Kant outlined the strategies for change as India takes over the leadership of the G20. "The first and foremost is the political narrative which India puts forward, the second is the priorities to shape the world and thirdly how well do we execute this presidency on ground. It's important to understand this because in the last few years, India has done a huge amount of digital transformation. India today does about 11 times more payments than what United States and Europe do together. During COVID, we provided 2 billion vaccinations to our citizens, which was all done digitally. A study by the Bank of International Settlements said that (the digital milestones) India has achieved in the last eight years, what would normally have taken 50 years."
"Regarding our priorities for G20, the world is facing huge recessionary trends across the world. It's important that we talk about inclusive, sustainable growth, because without growth we will not be able to lift people above the poverty line and growth alone will have a huge impact on the lives of citizens in the global south. India aims to work with the rest of the world to drive inclusive, resilient and sustainable growth," Kant outlined. "Thirdly, we face the challenge of climate action and climate finance. As India becomes more industrialized, we will become the third biggest polluters in the world. And therefore India must become the first country in the world to industrialize without carbonizing the world."
"Digital transformation will drive the growth of India for the next three decades. India's model is unique and if you look around the world there are 4 billion people who do not have a digital identity. There are 2 billion people who do not even have a bank account. There are 133 countries in the world who do not have a fast payment mechanism. India's experience can be taken to other parts of the global south and really help to transform the lives of citizens. And lastly, our next priority is about women led development. This whole cycle of women driving growth and progress and development is very, very critical." Amitabh Kant concluded.
Professor (Dr) C. Raj Kumar, Founding Vice Chancellor O.P. Jindal Global University said, "It is my honour to welcome Amitabh Kant, G20 Sherpa for India to this very important inauguration. The Jindal Global Center for G20 Studies is a part of this university, as a multidisciplinary centre that will encompass all the 12 schools of the university. Kant belongs to that outstanding group of Indian civil servants who have made transformative contributions to the development of India. In his earlier avatars he has undertaken initiatives which have resulted in significantly impactful public policy reforms, as well as transformative change in society. The Jindal Global Center for G20 studies will be a permanent Center located at O.P. Jindal Global University to be able to engage in research knowledge creation, thought leadership, including hosting seminars, conferences, lectures and workshops on a variety of issues concerning G20. We have identified five important agenda points: a global conference of universities from each G20 country which we concluded recently with nearly 100 universities from G20 countries; to organize a G20 Ambassadors conclave that will promote a dialogue on the future of diplomacy; to host the Global Justice Colloquium with a focus on bringing lawyers and judges from the G20 countries to discuss and debate on the state of justice systems and to host the World Sustainability Forum to engage on issues surrounding environment and climate change. And fifth to host the Global Policy and Development Dialogue for bringing together policymakers and academics to discuss about issues confronting the world of policy development."
Professor Ravi Thapar Professor and Executive Dean of the Jindal School of International Affairs outlined the milestones of the Jindal School of International Affairs (JSIA) and added, "It's a very significant and momentous occasion for JSIA, to have such a distinguished lecture by an intellectual, now a diplomat from the G20. Amitabh Kant. COVID took a toll and made a dent of about USD 14 trillion in the global GDP. According to the World Inequality Lab, Paris, about 1 per cent of the world's richest population is walking away with 38 per cent of the world's wealth while the bottom 58 per cent of the global population is just about to get 2 per cent of the wealth. In a world of inequality, it becomes very important for the South to start asserting this voice and the G20 happens to be one of the most influential groups to do that."
Professor (Dr) Mohan Kumar, Dean & Director Jindal Global Centre for G20 Studies said, "It is really an honour and a pleasure to welcome Amitabh Kant who has made such a difference to policy making in India. As students, no matter what you do, no matter which profession you are, as individuals, you can make a difference to society. We have outlined five priorities of the Indian presidency which we will discuss: be it multilateralism, climate change, voice of the Global South, inclusive economic growth and more."
The concluding address was delivered by Professor Dabiru Sridhar Patnaik, Registrar of O.P. Jindal Global University.
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