Heads of state and government of 19 member countries, EU, other invited countries and international organizations participated

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday termed the COVID-19 pandemic as an important turning point in the history of humanity and the biggest challenge the world is facing since the World War II. He said this while participating in the 15th G20 Summit convened by Saudi Arabia.

The Summit centered on the theme “Realizing Opportunities of 21st Century for All” saw Prime Minister Modi calling for a new global index for the post-corona world that comprises four key elements – creation of a vast talent pool; ensuring that technology reaches all segments of the society; transparency in systems of governance; and dealing with Mother Earth with a spirit of trusteeship. Based on this, the G20 can lay the foundation of a new world.

He called for decisive action by G20, not limited to economic recovery, jobs and trade, but to focus on preserving planet earth noting that all of us are trustees of humanity’s future.

The Summit, which saw participation of respective Heads of State/ Government of 19 member countries, EU, other invited countries and international organizations, was conducted in virtual format in view of the COVID-19 pandemic.

At the Summit, Prime Minister Modi underscored that in the past few decades, while there has been an emphasis on capital and finance, the time has come to focus on multi-skilling and re-skilling to create a vast human talent pool. This would not only enhance the dignity of citizens but would make our citizens more resilient to face crises. He also said that any assessment of new technology should be based on its impact on ease of living and quality of Life.

He called for greater transparency in governance systems which will inspire our citizens to deal with shared challenges and enhance their confidence. He also said that dealing with environment and nature as trustees rather than owners will inspire us towards a holistic and healthy lifestyle, a principle whose benchmark could be a per capita carbon footprint.

Noting that ‘Work from Anywhere’ is a new normal in the post-COVID world, the Prime Minister also suggested creation of a G20 Virtual Secretariat as a follow up and documentation repository.

The 15th G20 Leaders’ Summit would continue on 22 November 2020 culminating in the adoption of the Leaders’ Declaration and with Saudi Arabia passing on the Presidency to Italy.