At G20 Summit, Modi calls for new global index for post-Covid-19 world

The pandemic, economic crisis created by the shutdowns, travel restrictions, and ways to recover topped the agenda of the summit
Last Updated 21 November 2020, 18:23 IST

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday called for a new global index for the post-Covid-19 world, based on four pillars —creating a vast talent pool, making technology available to all sections of society, transparency in governance and “dealing with Mother Earth with a spirit of trusteeship”.

Modi said the G20 could lay the foundation of a new world based on the new Global Index for the post-Covid-19 world.

He was addressing the G20 virtual summit chaired by Saudi Arabia’s King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud. He termed the pandemic as an important turning point in the history of humanity and the biggest challenge the world faced since World War II.

The pandemic, economic crisis created by the shutdowns, travel restrictions, and ways to recover topped the agenda of the summit.

The Prime Minister called for decisive action by the G20, not limited to economic recovery, the revival of jobs and resumption of trade, but also focussing on preserving Earth, noting that all were trustees of humanity’s future, according to the Ministry of External Affairs' press release.

He said capital and finance were emphasised upon over the past few decades. But the time had come to focus on multi-skilling and reskilling to create a vast human talent pool.

“This would not only enhance the dignity of citizens but would make our citizens more resilient to face crises. Any assessment of new technology should be based on its impact on the ease of living and quality of life,” said Modi, adding that greater transparency in governance systems would inspire citizens to deal with shared challenges and enhance their confidence.

He also said dealing with the environment and nature as trustees rather than owners would inspire towards a holistic and healthy lifestyle, a principle whose benchmark could be a per capita carbon footprint.

Earlier, King Salman, chairing the G20 summit, opened the conclave, noting that the international community must prepare better for a future pandemic.

“Although we are optimistic about the progress made in developing vaccines, therapeutics and diagnostics tools for the Covid-19, we must work to create the conditions for affordable and equitable access to these tools for all peoples,” said the King of Saudi Arabia.

“We must also continue to support the global economy and reopen our economies and borders to facilitate the mobility of trade and people.”

The Saudi King also called for supporting the developing countries in a coordinated manner to maintain the development already achieved over the past decades.

The Prime Minister in his speech suggested the creation of a G20 Virtual Secretariat in keeping with the new normal of the post-Covid-19 world order.

(Published 21 November 2020, 18:20 IST)

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