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“We walk the talk” when it comes to South-South cooperation, EAM Jaishankar affirms

September 25, 2023 9:51 AM IST

EAM S Jaishankar | UNGA78 | South-south cooperation | India-UN for Global South

External Affairs Minister Dr. S Jaishankar reiterated India’s commitment towards South-South cooperation, saying “We have endeavoured to walk the talk”. He said this while addressing “India-UN for Global South: Delivering for Development in New York”, in New York on Saturday (September 23), on the sidelines of the 78th UN’s General Assembly.

Highlighting India’s successful G20 Summit, hosted in New Delhi, EAM Jaishankar said, “It was a challenging presidency because we were confronting a very sharp East-West polarisation and a very deep North-South divide.” He further stated that despite the challenges, India was determined as the president of the G20 to make sure that this organisation was able to get back to its core agenda which was of global growth and development.”

Addressing the delegates, EAM said, “Your presence means a lot to us. It also expresses the sentiments that you feel for India and underlines the import of South-South cooperation. We met just a few weeks after the New Delhi G20 Summit, a summit which took place on the theme of ‘One Earth, One Family, One Future'”.

During his speech, EAM S Jaishankar emphasized the appropriateness of commencing India’s G20 presidency by convening the voice of the Global South Summit, which involved the participation of 125 nations from the South. He stated that the initiative witnessed discussions within various ministerial tracks and engagement groups. “Now, during the course of that exercise and the deliberations, it was very clear to us that the Global South, in addition to bearing the consequences of structural inequities and historical burdens, was plagued by the impact of economic concentration, was suffering from the devastating consequences of the COVID and was beset by conflict, tensions and disputes which have stressed and distorted the international economy,” he added.

Stressing the responsibility to refocus on the urgent needs of the Global South in collaboration with all G20 members, Dr S Jaishankar says, stated 8 key outcomes of the New Delhi G20 Summit. This included, “The action plan for sustainable Development Goals, the reform of international financial institutions, a Green development pact, the high Principles for Life, the Lifestyle for Environment Initiative, an understanding on debt management, a consensus on women-led development, an acceptance of digital public infrastructure and an agreement to undertake global skills mapping.”

During his speech, S. Jaishankar expressed the belief that the G20 New Delhi Summit has, in numerous aspects, established the groundwork for the international community to re-evaluate its development prospects. He conveyed his optimism about the upcoming decade to overcome the challenges that have been experienced globally over the last few years. “While we are the G20 President till the end of this year, both before the G20 Presidency and certainly after it, we will remain very much a partner, contributor, collaborator and be an inspiration on how to address development challenges,” he added.

India’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Ruchira Kamboj, who was also present at the India-UN Global Summit, said, “As far as India is concerned, our engagement with the Global South is not just a matter of policy, it is ingrained in the very fabric of our culture and philosophy.” She further informed that at the UN, the India-UN Development Partnership Fund, a single country South-South initiative, has successfully developed a portfolio of 75 projects across 56 developing countries in just 6 years.

EAM Jaishankar, along with many other world leaders, is in New York to attend the UN General Assembly. The foreign minister will address UNGA on September 26. Following his visit to New York, Jaishankar is due to visit Washington, DC.

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