On September 9, the annual summit of the G20, an association of the 20 largest economies in the world, started in New Delhi. This time, the event is hosted by India, which chairs the group in 2023.
It is expected that a declaration will be adopted at the end of the summit. India's representative to the G20, Amitabh Kant, said earlier that this document is almost ready and will soon be submitted for approval by the leaders of the countries participating in the summit.
This year, the G20 summit will be held without the participation of Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping. Russia will be represented by Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, and China will be represented by Chinese Premier Li Qiang.
"There will be no common declaration"
Recall that on the eve of the meeting in the format of the "twenty", Sergey Lavrov said that the mandate of the association does not include issues of foreign policy and security, however, representatives of the West at each of the events within the framework of the Indian presidency in the G20 touched on Ukrainian issues.
"No issues of foreign policy and security policy are included in the mandate of the G200. It would seem that the question is closed. But no, during the Indian presidency, which holds about 1 useful events in various sectors of the world economy, the environment, investment issues, settlement mechanisms, finance, the West raised the topic of Ukraine at each of these events," Lavrov said at a meeting with students and faculty of MGIMO on September <>.
- Venue of the summit in New Delhi
- © Money SHARMA
At the same time, the head of Russian diplomacy said that Russia would not accept the G20 declaration without Moscow's position on global crises.
"In any case, there will be no joint declaration on behalf of all members of the Group of Twenty, which will not reflect our position, at the summit. There is a variant of work when the chairmanship, seeing irreconcilable differences for one reason or another, in this case because of the whims of the West, simply issues a communiqué of the chairman, which does not oblige any country to anything that is written there. But it won't be very good, and it's not our choice. Another option is to adopt a document that is dedicated to specific decisions in the field of competence of the G20, and let everyone say the rest on their own behalf, and we will disperse on this, "Sergey Lavrov emphasized.
Later, Bloomberg, citing one of the representatives of France, reported that the G20 member countries allegedly developed a unified approach to the Ukrainian issue. The publication also admitted that Western states have yet to come to a compromise with Russia.
In addition, on the eve of the summit, US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan said that Washington would like Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to take part in the summit in one capacity or another.
"From our point of view, every time President Zelensky has the opportunity to speak to any organization or group, it plays a positive role," TASS quoted Sullivan as saying.
However, earlier in August, the special secretary of the Indian presidency of the G20, Miktesh Pardeshi, said that Ukraine was not included in the list of countries invited to the summit. Later, Indian Foreign Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar noted that the G20 should not deal with the Russian-Ukrainian settlement. According to him, New Delhi considers this format as a platform for discussing global growth.
"The G20 should do what it was created for, and this is the reason for our decision," RBC quoted him as saying.
A number of media outlets admit that, in addition to Ukraine, the summit is expected to touch on the topic of Africa. Thus, Bloomberg reports that representatives of the European Union allegedly plan to take advantage of the absence of Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping at the summit to intensify their contacts with African states.
In particular, it is noted that European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, European Council President Charles Michel and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz will take part in negotiations with representatives of the countries of this continent.
Earlier, Charles Michel said that the G20 had reached an agreement on the admission of the African Union to the group. Michel explained that the union, which includes 55 countries, is invited to the summits of the association, but wants to obtain the status of a permanent member by analogy with the European Union.
The accession of the African Union to the G20 is also supported in Russia. Thus, the hope for full membership of the union in the group in July was expressed by Russian President Vladimir Putin. He stated this during a meeting with the Chairman of the African Union Azali Assoumani and the Chairman of the African Union Commission Moussa Faki Mahamat on the sidelines of the Russia-Africa forum.
The Russian leader stressed that Moscow considers the union "as a leading regional organization that forms a modern security structure on the continent and creates conditions for ensuring Africa's worthy place in the system of global economic relations."
"Significance has not yet been lost"
As Evgeny Semibratov, deputy director of the Institute for Strategic Studies and Forecasts of the Peoples' Friendship University of Russia, lecturer of the Znanie society, noted in an interview with RT, the G20 summit has become a platform for negotiations between two competing international blocs.
"The peculiarity of the G20 is that the platform brings together both the beneficiaries of the current unipolar world order - the countries of the collective West, and the states - supporters of a multipolar world. Moreover, this phenomenon has both pros and cons. Often, due to a significant difference in opinions, states cannot agree, but since they are all on the same planet, there should be a dialogue and exchange of views even among the opposing groups, "says the specialist.
- Flags of the G20 countries
- © Aijaz Rahi
At the same time, from his point of view, despite the uniqueness of the G20, this format is beginning to become obsolete against the backdrop of the rapidly developing BRICS.
A similar position is held by Konstantin Blokhin, an employee of the Center for Security Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences. He is confident that the West will try to use the "Big Twenty" in order to win over the countries of the Global South.
"However, it is not a fact that the Western bloc will be able to strengthen its position with the help of this format. The world is fragmenting, there are fewer and fewer neutral and vacillating people. In any case, in case of failure, the United States, together with its allies, will try to further promote their unified information agenda, "Blokhin said in a conversation with RT.
From his point of view, at the moment the two key aspects of this agenda are the Ukrainian conflict and the situation around Taiwan.
"I believe that the collective West will insist on including its position on these issues in a joint declaration. Russia and China understand this, and that's probably why the leaders of these states decided not to waste their time on another get-together of Western countries, "says Blokhin.
At the same time, as Semibratov recalls, India defended its position on one of the issues, refusing Zelensky to participate in the summit in any format.
"The absence of the Ukrainian president will in no way reduce the desire of the West to use the topic of the crisis in Ukraine as actively as possible to exert political pressure on Moscow. However, the fact that the organizers of the forum have advanced their sovereign position already indicates the development of independence of the countries of the Global South," the analyst argues.
The expert is convinced that within the framework of the current G20 summit, countries will not be able to develop a single plan of action due to too many contradictions in foreign policy.
"Nevertheless, let me remind you that the G20 is not the UN, geopolitical issues should not be resolved within the framework of the format. First of all, the association was created to find solutions to global financial and economic problems. Within the framework of the summit, participants will be able to discuss the post-COVID slowdown in economic development, cryptocurrencies, digitalization, and so on. The significance of the G20 has not yet been lost, but the prospects here are unenviable," the expert concluded.