India, a nation rich in diversity and innovation, embarked on a significant global leadership role as it assumed the G20 Presidency on December 1, 2022, succeeding Indonesia. As the torchbearer of global business discourse, the B20 Engagement Group played a pivotal role during India’s G20 Presidency, uniting international business leaders to voice their perspectives on matters of global economic and trade governance and presenting a unified stance for the entire G20 business community. Overseeing the orchestration of the B20’s activities during India’s Presidency was the B20 India Secretariat, represented by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII). At the helm was N Chandrasekaran, Chair of B20 India and Executive Chairman of Tata Sons, alongside distinguished members like RP Goenka from RPG Group, and Sanjiv Bajaj, Chairman & MD of Bajaj Finserv, who comprised the B20’s Steering Committee. The Secretariat, under their guidance, was entrusted with the responsibility of nurturing development and execution of the B20 process.
The overarching theme of India’s G20 Presidency was encapsulated in the phrase ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’ (One Earth, One Family, One Future), capturing the essence of global unity and shared responsibility. In tandem with this theme, India introduced a new thread into the global dialogue – “Inclusion and Diversity” – alongside other critical subjects. The apex of this journey was the B20 Summit, a gathering that resonated with the prime message of India’s visionary leader, Shri Narendra Modi. In his address to the Global Business Community at the
B20 Summit held in Delhi recently, he underscored five key imperatives:
Celebrate Consumer Care Day: Acknowledging the significance of customer centric practices.
Green Credit and Climate Positivity: Proposing the focus on “green credit” alongside carbon credit to foster climate-positive actions.
Advancements in Space Sector: Recognising the vital role of the Indian industry in the nation’s strides in the space sector.
Post-COVID-19 Mutual Trust: Emphasising the necessity of mutual trust in the post-pandemic world.
Global Supply Chain Resilience: Reaffirming India’s commitment to constructing trustworthy global supply chains, a landmark event, the B20 Concluding Conference unfolded in Delhi from August 25 to 27, 2023. Leading the charge was Chandrasekaran, the visionary Executive Chairman of Tata Sons and Chair of B20. His opening speech explained how India is poised to lead.
Digitalisation and AI: Steering the global movement towards digitalisation and the adoption of Artificial Intelligence.
Cleaner Energy Sources: Promoting worldwide transition to cleaner energy sources.
Chandrasekaran also revealed two significant initiatives:
Global B20 Institute: The inception of a global B20 institute headquartered in India, is intended to be a thought leader and a think tank with experienced individuals working with B20 nations annually.
Diversity and Inclusion for Sustainable Growth: A dedicated focus on diversity and inclusion to drive sustainable growth, encompassing MSMEs, women and marginalised communities. Recognising the potential of these segments to fuel economic development and social progress, this emphasis is aimed to amplify their involvement in global business discourse. A resounding proposal was put forth by the B20 – a Global Fund aimed at achieving Sustainable Development Goals. It recommended a contribution of 0.25 per cent from every global company towards these objectives. India supported this proposition, suggesting a similar contribution to the global fund. A staggering estimated sum of $ 4.5 trillion over seven to ten years was deemed essential to address critical sustainability goals. India’s stewardship of the B20 presidency garnered admiration for its adept processes, strategic engagement and effective consensus-building. Over the course of seven months, a remarkable 54 significant recommendations emerged, underlining the impact of this collective endeavour. As India’s B20 presidency chapter drew to a close, the mantle of leadership was passed to Brazil, marking a seamless transition in this global connuum of dialogue and collaboration.