India’s Modi says ‘global governance has failed’ at G20 meeting

Indian prime minister calls on countries to find common ground amid global challenges.

Speaking at the opening of the G20 foreign ministers’ meeting in New Delhi on Thursday, Modi said that countries should acknowledge that multilateralism is currently “in crisis”.

“The experience of the last few years – financial crisis, climate change, pandemic, terrorism and wars – clearly shows that global governance has failed,” Modi said in a recorded statement.

“We should not allow issues that we cannot resolve together to come in the way of those we can,” Modi added.

Russia’s war in Ukraine is expected to be an important point of discussion at the meeting, although New Delhi is seen to be keen to steer talks towards issues affecting the Global South such as poverty eradication and climate finance.

On Wednesday, Indian Foreign Secretary Vinay Kwatra said New Delhi anticipated economic challenges related to the conflict getting equal attention as the war itself.

India, a major buyer of Russian armaments and energy, has not directly condemned Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Modi, however, told Russian President Vladimir Putin during a face-to-face meeting in September that, “I know today’s time is not a time for war.”

The G20 foreign ministers’ meeting comes after a gathering of finance ministers in Bengaluru last month failed to agree to a joint statement on the war.

At that meeting, Modi called on leading economies to help the world’s most vulnerable people and “bring back stability, confidence and growth to the global economy”.

The lack of consensus at the gathering of finance officials mirrored the outcome of last November’s G20 summit in Bali when host Indonesia released a declaration acknowledging differences between countries.

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