India’s turn to host the G20 summit is scheduled for 2019 but the country is now proposing to take up the presidency of the meet in 2018 as it would be having its general election polls in 2019.
The Indian government is in talks with Argentina and South Africa on contending for the G20 presidency before turn. India is supposed to host the G20 summit in 2019 but the country is now pitching to host the meet in 2018 instead of 2019, when general elections are due.
The year-long presidency involves hosting world’s most powerful leaders at a summit and the Indian government would like to take up the responsibility without the distraction of a national poll.
The Group of Twenty (G20) is an international economic cooperation that comprises 19 countries and the European Union. Leaders meet annually to discuss ways to strengthen the global economy, reform international financial institutions, improve financial regulation, and discuss the key economic reforms that are needed in each of the member countries.
In 2010, it was decided that G20 leaders will meet every year and a rotation system was conceived. India is yet to hold the chair after the new rotation system was put in place. While some critics see the G20 turning into a talking shop, its success in ending the secrecy of tax havens has changed the global landscape in taxation practices significantly.
The membership of countries is divided into five groups and India falls into the second group with Russia, South Africa and Turkey. Other groups include Australia, Canada, Saudi Arabia and the US; Argentina, Brazil and Mexico; France, Germany, Italy and the UK; China, Japan, South Korea and Indonesia.
India will have to secure a 2018 mandate for the chair this year itself so that the announcement of the presidency could be made at the September summit. This is crucial as past and future chairs along with the incumbent forms the ‘troika’ that ensures the G20’s smooth functioning.