Inclusion of AU in G20 provides opportunity to push for reforms – Ken Ofori-Atta –

Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta has welcomed the inclusion of the African Union in the Group of 20 – a platform for 20 of the world’s most industrialised and developing economies.

He said Africa now has the opportunity to contribute to crucial global issues and push for reforms to drive economic development across the continent.

“There had been a number of decisions taken without Africa on the board and thank God the G20 agreed that Africa will have a seat so we will be part of the designing the solutions to our Global challenges,” the Finance Minister said.

Mr Ofori-Atta was speaking on Sept 21, at a panel on the Energy Transition Accelerator organised by the Rockefeller Foundation on the sidelines of the ongoing United Nations General Assembly.

“The inclusion of the AU is long overdue and this will create a balance in global institutions,” he added. 

Why the G20 was established

The G20 was formed as an informal group in 1999 in the wake of the Asian financial crisis, providing a platform for finance ministers and central bank governors from 20 of the world’s largest and emerging economies. It later included heads of state and governments.

The group has since widened its scope beyond finance and economics, adding some of the world’s pressing challenges to its agenda. It includes health, climate change, food security, energy and sustainable development.

Until the admission of the African Union as a permanent member, the 19-member group jointly accounted for more than 80% of global productivity, 75% of global trade and about two-thirds of the world’s population.

Despite Africa joining the group with 3% of global economic output, the 55 member states come with a population of 1.3 billion people, largely in their youthful and productive stages of life.

The continent is aggressively pushing for inclusion at all international tables where decisions that affect its people are taken.

The Finance Minister said Africa will come with common positions on issues of international concern, especially the ones that affect the continent the most.

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