Twenty-four years after the formation of G20 in 1999, it is now to be known as G21. This follows the admission of the African Union, AU as a Permanent Member.
The decision is India’s biggest achievement of its G20 presidency especially when there is uncertainty over whether a joint communique will be released at the end of the ongoing summit in New Delhi due to deeply polarised divisions over the war in Ukraine involving Russia.
Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi welcomed the African Union to take a seat as a permanent member at the start of the G20 summit in New Delhi, marking the first expansion of the group since its formation as a group of 20 major economies in 1999.
With a name plate saying “Bharat” rather than “India” in front of his seat, Modi has further added fuel to the political debate that began after it emerged that the invitation for the G20 official dinner had gone on behalf of the “President of Bharat”.
As the two-day summit begins, about one-fifth of the membership of the G20 was absent, with the leaders of Mexico, Spain, Russia and China not in attendance.
(Editor: Terverr Tyav)