Oman, UAE to be guest countries at next year's G20 summit in India: Shringla

28/09/2022

MUMBAI, Sep 27: India has invited Oman and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) as guest countries for the Group of 20 leaders' summit to be held in New Delhi in September next year, India's chief G20 coordinator Harsh Vardhan Shringla said on Tuesday.
India will assume the Presidency of the influential group for one year from December 1, 2022, to November 30, 2023.
The two countries, members of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), will also participate in 200 meetings which will be held in the build up to the annual summit, he said.
Saudi Arabia, also a member of the GCC, is already a part of the G20.
So, the G20 will have the voice of the Gulf countries, Shringla said.
For the first time, we will have three countries of the GCC represented under our Presidency of the G20. In other words, we will have Saudi Arabia, which is already a member (of G20), and we have also invited the UAE and Oman, the former foreign secretary said.
He was speaking at a panel discussion on the topic, 'India, GCC and the G20: New Opportunities, New Possibilities', organised under the Arabian Sea Dialogue by the Observer Research Foundation (ORF) here.
Under its Presidency, India is expected to host over 200 G20 meetings across the country, beginning December 2022. The G20 leaders' summit at the level of Heads of State/Government is scheduled to be held on September 9 and 10, 2023, in New Delhi.
The G20, or Group of 20, is an intergovernmental forum of the world's major developed and developing economies. Collectively, the G20 accounts for 85 per cent of global GDP, 75 per cent of international trade and two-thirds of the world population, making it the premier forum for international economic cooperation.
Highlighting the deepening cooperation between India and the Gulf countries, Shringla said Prime Minister Narendra Modi, after assuming office in 2014, has visited the region nine times which is quite a record .
The veteran diplomat suggested that institutional dialogue between India and the GCC, which is currently at the foreign minister's level, should be elevated to the level of heads of state/government.
Shringla said India has a similar arrangement (institutional dialogue at level of heads of state/government) with the ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations), Central Asian countries, the African Union and Pacific Island states.
And there is no reason why we cannot elevate the dialogue (from foreign minister's position) to the level of heads of state and government (of GCC members), he said.
The former foreign secretary, however, clarified his suggestion was purely personal in nature .

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