Riyadh to host next G20 summit virtually

From 21-22 November, Saudi Arabia will host what will be the first meeting of the group in an Arab country
Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz speaks on video during a G20 virtual summit on coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, 26 March 2020

PHOTO/Bandar Algaloud/Cortesía de la Corte Real Saudita via REUTERS  -   Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz speaks on video during a G20 virtual summit on coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, 26 March 2020

Saudi Arabia will host the next G20 summit on 21 and 22 November, as it currently chairs the group. This will be the first to be held in an Arab country and will be opened and chaired by King Salman bin Abdulaziz al-Saud, according to a statement. International leaders will participate telematically due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Saudi authorities have announced.

Under the theme 'Seizing 21st Century Opportunities for All', the meeting will focus on "protecting lives and restoring growth by addressing vulnerabilities exposed during the pandemic and laying the foundation for a better future", according to the statement. In addition, they will address issues such as women and environmental protection. The 19 countries that are part of the group will participate in the event, as well as Spain, as the guest country.

The Saudi organisation recalled that this is not the first time that it has organised an event of this calibre in a telematic way, since in March it held an extraordinary meeting to deal with the impact of the coronavirus, as well as 100 ministerial sessions and working groups.

The G20, which brings together the leaders of developed and developing countries from each continent, recalled that so far this year the group has contributed 21 billion dollars to the production, distribution and access to diagnostics, treatments and vaccines for COVID-19. The countries that are part of the group of 20 represent 80% of the world's GDP.
In addition, it has invested $11 trillion to protect the world economy and launched a $14 billion debt deferral initiative for developing countries.


Videoconferencia de la reunión extraordinaria del G20
PHOTO/Screenshot of the special G20 meeting

As a prelude to the November meeting, a virtual meeting was held in July between the finance ministers and governors of the central banks of the group's member countries under the auspices of Mohammed al-Kaddan, finance minister of the Saudi kingdom, and Ahmed al-Kholifer, governor of the Monetary Authority of the Arabian peninsula country.

At this meeting, the lines to be followed by the most industrialised countries to tackle the economic recession caused by the COVID-19 health crisis were marked out. It was also pointed out that global economic activity is expected to contract sharply in 2020 due to the impact of the health crisis and related supply and demand shocks.

The G20 position is to promote cooperation to exit from this scenario: "Working together, we will continue and strengthen, as necessary, these efforts to support a rapid and robust recovery in order to achieve strong, sustainable, balanced and inclusive growth, taking full advantage of the current transformations in the shape of the recovery, consistent with our pre-crisis agenda".

The G20 Action Plan, adopted on 15 April, set out the key principles that guide the response and commitments to take concrete steps to boost international economic cooperation while dealing with this crisis, all in the perspective of a global economic recovery.