India’s presidency in two important multilateral forums – the Group of 20 (G20) and the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) – presents a significant opportunity for India to shape the global agenda and promote its interests in the changing global order. As the world grapples with the challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic, geopolitical tensions, and economic uncertainties, India’s leadership in G20 and SCO assumes even greater significance. In this article, we will discuss India’s priorities as G20 and SCO presidency and the potential impact of India’s leadership on global and regional issues.
Brief history of G20 and SCO
The G20 is an international forum of the world’s largest advanced and emerging economies, representing about two-thirds of the world’s population and 80% of global GDP. Established in 1999, the G20 has evolved into a premier platform for global economic governance, focusing on issues such as trade, finance, and development.The Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) is a Eurasian political, economic, and security alliance comprising eight member states, including China, Russia, India, and Pakistan. Established in 2001, the SCO aims to promote regional stability, economic cooperation, and cultural ties among member states.
Importance of India’s presidency in G20 and SCO
India’s presidency in G20 and SCO comes at a critical juncture when the world is facing unprecedented challenges and uncertainties. As a rising power with a growing economy and strategic influence, India’s leadership in these multilateral forums can help shape the global and regional agenda, promote its interests, and enhance its stature in the international community. India’s presidency in G20 and SCO also provides an opportunity to showcase its vision and capabilities in managing complex global issues.
A. Overview of G20: India assumed the G20 presidency in 2020 and has been actively engaged in promoting global cooperation on economic, financial, and social issues. The G20 has played a crucial role in coordinating global efforts to tackle the Covid-19 pandemic, mitigate its impact on the global economy, and promote a sustainable and inclusive recovery.
B. India’s priorities as G20 presidency: As the G20 presidency, India has identified four priority areas to guide its agenda for global cooperation:
Promoting sustainable and inclusive growth: India has emphasised the need for sustainable and inclusive growth, with a focus on employment, education, healthcare, and infrastructure. India aims to promote policies that support economic growth while also addressing social inequalities and environmental challenges.
Enhancing global trade and investment: India recognizes the importance of international trade and investment in promoting economic growth and development. India has emphasized the need for a rules-based, open, and transparent multilateral trading system, and has called for reform of the World Trade Organization (WTO) to make it more effective and responsive to the needs of developing countries.
Fostering innovation and digital transformation: India is committed to promoting innovation and digital transformation as key drivers of economic growth and social development. India has emphasized the need to create an enabling environment for innovation, including policies that support research and development, entrepreneurship, and digital infrastructure.
Strengthening global cooperation on climate change and energy: India has recognized the urgent need to address climate change and promote sustainable energy systems. India has emphasized the need for global cooperation to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, promote renewable energy, and enhance energy efficiency.
C. India’s role in shaping global economic governance: As the G20 presidency, India has played a crucial role in shaping global economic governance and promoting international cooperation on a wide range of economic, financial, and social issues. India has been actively engaged in the G20 Working Groups on Finance and Sherpas, and has led the G20 Agriculture Ministers’ Meeting and the G20 Labour and Employment Ministers’ Meeting.
India has also played a key role in promoting the G20’s agenda on digital transformation, including through the G20 Digital Economy Task Force and the G20 Ministerial Meeting on Trade and Digital Economy.
A. Overview of SCO: India assumed the presidency of the SCO in 2020 and has been actively engaged in promoting regional cooperation and stability among member states. The SCO has played a crucial role in promoting economic integration, cultural exchange, and security cooperation among its member states.
B. India’s priorities as SCO presidency: As the SCO presidency, India has identified four priority areas to guide its agenda for regional cooperation:
Enhancing security cooperation among member states: India has emphasized the need for closer security cooperation among member states to address common threats and challenges, including terrorism, extremism, and drug trafficking. India has called for greater cooperation among member states on intelligence sharing, law enforcement, and counter-terrorism measures.
Promoting economic and trade cooperation: India recognizes the importance of economic and trade cooperation in promoting regional development and prosperity. India has emphasized the need for greater economic integration among member states, including through the promotion of trade, investment, and infrastructure development.
Strengthening cultural and people-to-people ties: India has emphasized the importance of cultural exchange and people-to-people ties in promoting regional cooperation and understanding. India has called for greater exchange programs in the fields of education, science and technology, and culture.
Addressing regional and global challenges through SCO platform: India has recognized the potential of the SCO platform in addressing regional and global challenges, including the Covid-19 pandemic, climate change, and cybersecurity. India has called for greater coordination among member states on these issues, including through the establishment of working groups and joint initiatives.
C. India’s role in promoting regional stability and connectivity: As the SCO presidency, India has played a crucial role in promoting regional stability and connectivity among member states. India has been actively engaged in the SCO Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure (RATS) and the SCO Contact Group on Afghanistan, and has called for greater regional cooperation on security and stability issues.India has also emphasized the need for greater connectivity among member states, including through the promotion of infrastructure development, digital connectivity, and people-to-people ties.
India’s presidency in G20 and SCO presents a significant opportunity to shape the global economic governance and promote regional cooperation and stability. India’s priorities as G20 presidency, including promoting sustainable development, enhancing global trade and investment, fostering innovation and digital transformation, and strengthening global cooperation on climate change and energy, highlight its commitment to inclusive and sustainable development.
As the SCO presidency, India’s focus on enhancing security cooperation, promoting economic and trade cooperation, strengthening cultural and people-to-people ties, and addressing regional and global challenges through the SCO platform underscores its commitment to regional cooperation and stability.
India’s leadership in the G20 and SCO demonstrates its growing role as a responsible global and regional power committed to promoting inclusive and sustainable development, enhancing regional security and stability, and addressing common challenges facing the international community.