Dear Amitabh Kant, G20 Sherpa, we are writing to you on the historic occasion of India assuming the G20 Presidency and to hugely welcome your mantra of “One Earth, One Family, One Future”.
You assume the Presidency of the G20 at a crucial time in global as well as Indian history. As host country you are uniquely positioned to lead an inspiring new growth story and strategy for the 21st century, leading the design and delivery of a new Grand Bargain that drives an additional 2-3% of global GDP annually through redesigned financial superhighways, unlocking trillions in crucial capital currently stuck in low growth economies and conservatively managed multilateral development banks. Your leadership can channel these trillions towards tackling poverty, hunger, pandemics and other global health threats, gender inequality and the climate crisis. Building on your standing as a fast-growing large economy that is prepared to fight for smaller economies and blend development and climate solutions at scale, this is how India further realizes its potential as a geopolitical leader, given Indians are incredible innovators from world-beating digital public goods and platforms for delivery, to locally-led social innovation at vast scale. This G20 is the time to learn from challenges then build on your successful innovations and take them global.
People around the world are hungry for systemic strategic action that cracks the root causes of the poly-crises cascading around us. To help deliver your vision of One Earth, One Family, One Future, we encourage you to ensure the following six key strategically linked items are high in your Action Agenda for the G20:
1. MDB REFORM & MULTILATERAL FINANCE ACTION
Full implementation of all five recommendations of the G20 Capital Adequacy Framework review, to ensure the MDBs support scaled financing of global public goods. This includes directing the MDBs to scale support for countries’ just energy transitions, stronger pandemic preparedness and health systems, boosting sustainable agricultural productivity and investments into the educational empowerment of the developing world’s youth.
Ensure not just the quantity but also the quality of MDB lending improves. This must be reflected in the World Bank Evolution Roadmap and other MDBs implementation plans so middle income countries are more engaged, disbursals are faster, funding backs policies for scale not just individual projects, inefficiencies reduced, social innovators and new technologies unleashed and citizens engaged. The update at the IMF World Bank Spring meetings on the implementation of the CAF plans is a key moment of accountability for MDBs and their shareholders. As quality, speed and scale improves a significant Green and Resilient Capital Increase should be drawn up to further accelerate investment and incentivize reform.
2. CLIMATE ACTION
Support global facilities to diffuse best practice on developing country platforms for just energy transitions, while also ensuring the G20 commits to phase down all fossil fuels and respect the “ratchet mechanism” by increasing emissions reduction ambition.
Use your platform to encourage donor countries among the G20 to deliver on the $100 billion promise for climate finance, ensure they are on track to double adaptation financing by 2025, and agree a post-2025 New Collective Quantitative Target (NCQT) that is needs-driven/bottom up, and includes private sector finance and helps deliver the right types of capital at the right price.
Ensure the new Loss and Damage Fund is financed from entirely new sources and not at the expense of other accounts already designed for development and climate goals.
3. DEBT & LIQUIDITY ACTION
Play the honest broker role – which India is brilliantly positioned for - through convening public and private creditors and indebted nations to collaborate in avoiding a damaging developing country debt crisis. To help get there we encourage you commission a rapid Independent Expert review- much like the effective CAF process- on how the G20 can significantly improve the current G20 Common Framework on debt.
Use your Presidency to ensure the G20 delivers on their commitment to reallocate 100 billion in SDRs (or equivalents), including through MDBs and the IMF’s Resilience Sustainability Trust.
4. FOOD & NUTRITION SECURITY ACTION
Reboot the Global Agriculture and Food Security Program (GAFSP), first agreed by the G20 in 2009, and scale up its response to the sharp rise in global food insecurity and malnutrition to spread smart safety nets, save lives and to promote a transition to sustainable, equitable, nutritious and resilient food systems fit for the future. The Ceres2030 proposal on sustainable food systems recommends at least $14bn be invested by donors and more than matched by developing countries. These sums should go into scaling research, innovation and investment into rural infrastructure and productive safety nets in order to better serve the needs of the worlds’ smallholder farmers, rural SMEs and social enterprises- so many of which are run by women.
5. GENDER EQUALITY ACTION
Broker a G20 commitment to make women and girl’s equality a consistent and central theme of every G20 Summit. The 76 million Indian women in 7 million self-help groups are an inspirational model to build on and deepen within India and share as best practise across G20 partners. To help advance equality India has excellent lessons to share and strengthen on the use of digital platforms for women’s financial inclusion, using data to empower women with suitable affordable credit at lower rates and access new streams of capital for female entrepreneurs and social innovators. Ensuing girls access quality education is also essential.
6. PANDEMIC & HEALTH ACTION
Secure agreement from all G20 nations to contribute to a sustainable, multi-year financing plan for pandemic prevention, preparedness and response that is additional to existing financial commitments for other global health priorities and helps improve overall health coverage. In their respective G20 presidencies, Italy and Indonesia commissioned the G20 High-Level Independent Panel (HLIP) on Financing the Global Commons and established the Pandemic Fund. These efforts remain nascent, however; the Pandemic Fund to date has only US$1.6 billion in pledges against the $10.5 billion agreed target to close critical global preparedness gaps.. Furthermore, no clear solution has emerged for rapid surge financing to avoid the delays and resulting global inequities in the COVID-19 pandemic. India is well-positioned to provide the strong, sustained leadership necessary to drive concerted action on pandemic and health financing and ensure the world is better prepared for the next pandemic threat, which could emerge anywhere, at any time and may be far more devastating than COVID in terms of both human and economic losses.
To help achieve all the above, we encourage that you partner with the UN on a successful summits on the SDGs, Pandemic Preparedness and Universal Health Coverage in September; Japan on a successful G7; France and Barbados on a successful New Financial Deal summit in June; and the UAE on a successful COP28 in November. We also encourage you to strengthen the G20 by making the African Union a formal permanent participant, ensuring continuity of your Action Agenda into subsequent South African and Brazilian G20s, and by doing more to support and protect diversity and civic space.
We offer our organisations and networks - with partners in every sector and every corner of the globe - to partner with your team and relevant ministries to help India make your G20 a transformative success, with a lasting legacy, in the delivery of this shared action agenda.
Pandemic Action Network