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India’s G20 Presidency Is Largest Ever

The first summit in South Asia, it will host the largest delegation of 43 heads of State and government as well as the heads of international organisations.

IMAGE: Bharat Mandapam in Pragati Maidan ahead of the G20 Summit. Photograph: ANI Photo

The 18th Leaders Summit of the G20 will be held in New Delhi on September 9-10.

The first summit in South Asia, it will host the largest delegation of 43 heads of State and government as well as the heads of international organisations.

A major milestone for India’s growing economic clout and global footprint, it will also be a key validation of the country’s evolving foreign policy, which has created a new space for India’s rising geopolitical ambitions.

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IMAGE: Delhi is all spruced up and ready for the G20 Summit on Saturday and Sunday, September 9 and 10. Photograph: Mohd Zakir/ANI Photo

Founded in 1999 in response to several world economic crises, the G20 is the world’s primary venue for international economic and financial cooperation.

Bringing together the 20 most powerful economies in the world, the grouping includes Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Italy, India, Indonesia, Japan, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, Turkey, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

The European Union too is a member.

The grouping represents about 85 per cent of global GDP, over 75 per cent of global trade, and about two-thirds of the world population.

It may grow to represent a much larger chunk of humanity if India’s proposal to expand membership to the African Union is accepted by all leaders later this year.

Since 2008, the G20 nations have convened at least once a year, bringing together leaders for an annual gathering that has wide geopolitical implications.

The annual summits have become the core of global policymaking on pressing financial, strategic, and economic matters over the past decade.

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IMAGE: External Affairs Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar meets with US Secretary of State Antony J Blinken on the sidelines of the G20 foreign ministers’ meeting in New Delhi, March 2, 2023. Photograph: Olivier Douliery/Pool/Reuters

Eyes on India

In its G20 presidency, India hosted 230 meetings across 32 different sectors, in more than 60 different cities in India.

In the past, G20 meetings have been held in 9-10 cities by a host nation, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar has said.

In-person participation during India’s G20 presidency is among the largest ever.

Looking beyond the dignitaries, India is also welcoming a much higher number of overall foreign visitors as part of the G20.

Earlier this year, the tourism ministry had projected an estimated 150,000 guests will arrive in India in 2023 to participate in events, including those being held by engagement groups outside the government umbrella.

Holding the G20 presidency, India has the prerogative to invite other allied nations to the summit.

The ministry of external affairs has confirmed that Bangladesh, Egypt, Mauritius, the Netherlands, Nigeria, Oman, Singapore, Spain, and the UAE will be guest nations.

Feature Presentation: Ashish Narsale/Rediff.com

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