New Delhi: External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar, on January 13, articulated his views rather assertively vis-a-vis the world order and the roles played by the United Nations and maintained that “a frozen 1945-invented mechanism is simply unable to articulate the wider concerns”.
“Some powers have been singularly focused on their own advantage, to the exclusion of the well-being of the international community. And the G20, reflecting the composition of its membership, has had its own
particular focus. This is what we are seeking to change,” Dr Jaishankar said in his opening remarks at the Foreign Ministers’ Session on G20 of the ‘Voice of Global South Summit’.
He said, “the knock-on effects of the Ukraine conflict complicated the economic situation. The costs and availability of fuel, food and fertilizers has emerged as a major concern for many of us. So too has the disruption in trade and commercial services. However, none of this has got the attention that it deserves in global councils”.
In this context, he lamented, “Where the United Nations is concerned, a frozen 1945-invented mechanism is simply unable to articulate the wider concerns of its membership”.
The External Affairs Minister said, “unsustainable debt, unviable projects, trade barriers, contracting financial flows and climate pressure” have added to the anxieties of the Global South.
“To this was added the devastation of the Covid pandemic and the discriminatory practices which characterized global response. It starkly exposed the dangers of over-centralized globalization and unreliable supply chains. It was a reminder too that a more democratic and equitable world can only be built on greater diversification and localization of capabilities,” he emphasized.
Dr Jaishankar further said, “India’s G20 priorities will be shaped in consultation with not just our G20 partners, but also our fellow citizens in the Global South. This is an opportunity for India to articulate an agenda and for the Global South to show the way. India will prioritize Reformed Multilateralism and Institutions for the 21st century during its Presidency”.
India will also pitch for strong collective actions to accelerate progress on the Sustainable Developmental Goals (SDGs).
“India will take a Lifestyle for the Environment (LiFE ) approach to climate action while keeping the complementarities of development agenda and our Climate goals at the centre,” he said, adding India will also focus on strengthening international cooperation in addressing the challenges relating to the increasing threat of Terrorism faced by many countries. The terror menace only increased in the face of emerging technologies, he pointed out.
Dr Jaishankar also said, “Prime Minister Narendra Modi has declared that this is not an era of war. He has spoken about the imperative to give up the ‘us vs them’ mindset and to work collectively as one human family. To many of us in the Global South, this sentiment strikes a very familiar chord”.
He further stated, “From decolonization movements to resisting alignment in the face of a deeply polarized world, the Global South has always shown the middle path. The path where diplomacy,
dialogue and cooperation take primacy over competition, conflict, and divisions. We all know that choosing peace, cooperation and multilateralism is a very patient endeavour that requires enormous bridge building”.
But at the same time, he maintained that it is the course that the world must take if the interests of the Global South are kept at its core. “We welcome your views in this regard and promise to amplify the voice of the Global South during our G20 Presidency,” Dr Jaishankar said.