Prime Minister Narendra Modi will represent India at the “G-20 Leaders’ Extraordinary Virtual Summit” on the global Coronavirus threat through video-conferencing on Thursday. Saudi King Salman will chair the “virtual” meet through video-conferencing from Riyadh as Saudi Arabia is the current Chair of the G-20.
PM Modi tweeted on Wednesday evening, “The #G20 has an important global role to play in addressing the COVID-19 pandemic. I look forward to productive discussions tomorrow at the #G20VirtualSummit, being coordinated by the Saudi G20 Presidency. @g20org@KingSalman”.
Apart from G-20 leaders including PM Modi, leaders of select invited countries including Spain, Jordan, Singapore and Switzerland as well as leaders of Vietnam (chair of ASEAN) and South Africa (Chair of African Union) are also expected to participate.
In a statement from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia said, “King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud will chair the meeting to advance a coordinated global response to the Covid-19 pandemic and its human and economic implications. International bodies such as the WHO, World Bank and IMF are also expected to participate.”
In addition, Saudi Arabia is expected to host a regular Summit in November this year at its Capital Riyadh.
The G-20 “is the premier forum for international economic cooperation” and “gathers the leaders of the largest economies of the world to discuss financial and socio-economic issues”.
It comprises countries that now account for about 85 percent of the world's GDP. The G20 members are Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Republic of Korea, Turkey, the United Kingdom, the United States and the European Union (EU).
On the invitees, a statement on the G-20 website said, “In addition to the G20 members, other countries are invited to participate. Spain is a permanent guest invitee to the G20 meetings. In 2020, Jordan, Singapore and Switzerland are invited as guest countries. International Organizations that have historically contributed to the G20 work are invited as well.
These include the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the Financial Stability Board (FSB), the International Labour Organization (ILO), the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the United Nations (UN), the World Bank Group (WBG), the World Health Organization (WHO) and the World Trade Organization (WTO).”
It added, “In 2020, regional organizations are also invited, including the Arab Monetary Fund (AMF), the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB), as well as Vietnam the Chair of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), South Africa the Chair of the African Union (AU), the United Arab Emirates the Chair of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), and the Republic of Rwanda the Chair of the New Partnership for Africa's Development (NEPAD).”