The Group of Twenty (G20), composed of 19 countries and the European Union, emerged as a premier forum for international economic cooperation in the aftermath of the 2008 global financial crisis. Despite its origination in 1999, it was only after this crisis that the G20 succeeded in cementing its position as a vital global forum for promoting fiscal collaboration and strengthening the international monetary system.
Before 2008, G7, consisting of the seven most advanced economies, was the primary forum for resolving global economic issues. However, the financial crisis highlighted the complexities of the global economy, underscoring the increasing significance of emerging economies. The G7’s organizational structure couldn’t carry the burden of resurrecting the wounded world economy after the crisis, necessitating the rise of the G20 for more inclusive and comprehensive economic cooperation.
The G20’s diverse membership, representing around 80% of the global GDP, 75% of international trade, and two-thirds of the world’s population, is a vital strength. This distinction enables the G20 to address issues beyond the scope of the G7, providing a more global perspective and engaging emerging economies such as China, India, Brazil, and South Africa.
Furthermore, the G20 focuses on enhancing policy coordination among its members, identifying and addressing any discrepancies that might act as barriers to economic growth. The forum’s responsive and resilient nature enables its members to cooperatively navigate the world through financial recessions and deliver reliable and sustainable growth.
The G20 has also expanded its global impact by conducting outreach dialogues with non-member countries, various international organizations, and civil society representatives. This engagement fosters a broader understanding of global economic realities and helps forge more informed and markable strategies and policies to tackle global economic challenges.
In essence, while its evolution is a testament to the changing global economic order, the G20’s ability to promote robust, sustainable, balanced, and inclusive growth has made it a premier forum for international economic cooperation. Its contribution to addressing not only economic but also other pressing issues like climate change, healthcare, and technological advancements underscores its role as a dominant platform for global governance and decision-making.