India's proposal for G20 membership for African Union included in draft communique for 2023 summit

India has been pressing for granting the membership to the African Union arguing that the voice of the continent cannot be ignored

G20 nations' flags (photo: Getty Images)
G20 nations' flags (photo: Getty Images)


India's proposal to accord full membership of the G20 to the African Union has been included in the draft communique that is being finalised for the annual summit of the grouping in New Delhi in September, people familiar with the matter said on Friday, July 14.

Top negotiators of the grouping of the world's wealthiest nations are extensively deliberating on the communique at the three-day Sherpas' meeting that began in this heritage city on Thursday, July 13.

"The proposal for granting full G20 membership to the African Union has been incorporated in the draft communique," said one of the persons cited above.

The delegates, also comprising those from invitee countries and leading international organisations, are deliberating and engaging in co-authoring the leaders' declaration to be eventually adopted at the G20 Summit that will take place on September 9 and 10.

The third Sherpas meeting under New Delhi's presidency is being chaired by India's G20 Sherpa Amitabh Kant.

The African Union (AU) is a continental body consisting of 55 member states that make up the countries of the African continent.

India has been pressing for granting the membership to the AU arguing that the voice of the continent cannot be ignored.

Last month, Prime Minister Narendra Modi wrote to the leaders of the G20 nations proposing that AU be given the full membership at the upcoming summit.

The people cited above said there has been no indication of any disagreement on India's proposal for G20 membership of for the AU. But at the same time, they noted that it would be premature to say anything concrete ahead of the summit.

The G20 operates on the basis of consensus and even a single differing voice would result in the proposal not getting approval, they said.

India has been arguing that inclusion of the AU in the G20 would be a right step towards a just, fair, more inclusive and representative global architecture and governance.

The Sherpas' meeting is set to deliberate on the Indian proposal on Saturday.

As part of India's G20 presidency, Modi has also been particularly focusing on incorporating priorities of the African countries in the G20 agenda.

In January, India hosted the Voice of the Global South Summit with an aim to highlight the problems and challenges facing the developing countries.

The G20 or Group of 20 is an intergovernmental forum of the world's major developed and developing economies.

The members represent around 85 per cent of the global GDP, over 75 per cent of the global trade, and about two-thirds of the world population.   The grouping comprises Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Turkey, the UK, the US and the European Union (EU).

The AU is considered the top most grouping representing the voice of Africa. It has been working towards ensuring progress and economic growth of the African nations.

It was officially launched in 2002 as a successor to the Organisation of African Unity (OAU).  In Hampi, the G20 delegates are also visiting historical sites and monuments such as the Vijaya Vithala temple, Yeduru Basvanna complex and the Virupaksha temple, the Rayas, Hampi museum showcasing of grandeur legacy.

They will also experience the local crafts and handicrafts of Chennapatna toys, Kinhalla, Bidri, Ganjifa skillfully crafted and decorated by the local artisans," said an official.

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