The African Union (AU) was granted permanent membership of the Group of 20 (G20) major economies on Saturday, September 9, 2023, at the G20 summit in New Delhi, India. The move was proposed by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who is the current chair of the G20.
The AU is a continental body of 55 member states, representing over 1.3 billion people. It is the second regional grouping to be granted permanent membership of the G20, after the European Union.
The decision to grant the AU permanent membership was met with widespread praise from African leaders and organizations. The AU Commission Chairperson, Moussa Faki Mahamat, said that the move was a “historic moment” for Africa and would “strengthen the voice of the continent on the global stage.”
The AU’s permanent membership of the G20 is seen as a major victory for Africa and a recognition of its growing economic and political importance. It will give the AU a seat at the table of the world’s most powerful economies and allow it to play a more active role in shaping global economic and financial policies.
The AU’s permanent membership of the G20 is also seen as a boost for India’s efforts to promote the interests of the Global South. Modi has made it a priority of his G20 presidency to give a greater voice to developing countries and to address the challenges facing the Global South, such as poverty, inequality, and climate change.
The G20 summit in New Delhi is being held against the backdrop of a number of global challenges, including the COVID-19 pandemic, the war in Ukraine, and the climate crisis. The summit is expected to focus on these challenges, as well as on issues such as food security, debt relief, and sustainable development.
The AU’s permanent membership of the G20 will give it a platform to raise these issues and to advocate for solutions that benefit Africa and the Global South. It is a major step forward for Africa and a sign of the continent’s growing influence in the world.
In addition to the AU’s permanent membership, the G20 leaders are also expected to discuss the following issues at the summit:
- The COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on the global economy
- The war in Ukraine and its impact on energy prices and food security
- The climate crisis and the need for urgent action
- Food security and the need to address the rising cost of food
- Debt relief for developing countries
- Sustainable development
The G20 summit is a major opportunity for the world’s leading economies to come together and address these pressing challenges. The AU’s permanent membership will give it a voice at the table and will help to ensure that the voices of Africa and the Global South are heard.
The summit is being held under the theme of “Building a Resilient Global Economy.” The leaders are expected to adopt a declaration that outlines their commitments to addressing the challenges facing the world.
The summit is also expected to be a test of the G20’s ability to act on these challenges. The war in Ukraine has created a number of divisions within the G20, and it remains to be seen whether the leaders will be able to find common ground.
However, the AU’s permanent membership is a positive development and is a sign of the growing importance of Africa in the global economy. The AU is now well-positioned to play a more active role in shaping global economic and financial policies.