As the world is passing through uncertainties, the global system is being questioned perhaps more than ever before. The pandemic has accelerated this questioning process and revealed issues. The global economy has not fully recovered, and our efforts to achieve the United Nations 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals have been hampered. The pandemic increased inequalities and left more people at risk of poverty. One of the biggest challenges is to take the necessary steps to accelerate progress on the SDGs without any delay.
Ending the pandemic and preventing it from being a threat to the global economy and then ensuring a fair and strong recovery is possible only through international cooperation and solidarity. As the G20, we must continue to act in coordination, put more efforts into restoring global confidence and intensify our efforts to support countries in need. I believe that our messages of solidarity and cooperation will not only increase the effectiveness of the fight against the pandemic, but will also give hope to billions of people facing difficulties.
As a requirement of global solidarity, Turkey dispatched medical aid to 159 countries and 12 international organisations in the fight against the pandemic. By sharing our means and capabilities with humanity, we worked to relieve the burden on the countries that asked for our assistance.
Another critical element in the fight against the pandemic is avoiding vaccine nationalism and vaccine discrimination. The use of the vaccine as a tool of oppression or policy dictation is contrary to reason and conscience.
As Turkey, we are carrying out our indigenous vaccine research to be finalised before the end of this year. Our goal is to put our TURKOVAC vaccine at the disposal of all humanity when it becomes ready to use.
As G20 members, our aim is to ensure strong, sustainable, balanced and inclusive growth. It is essential that the least developed and developing countries are not abandoned to their fate in the face of the pandemic, in order to achieve a more inclusive future. The allocation of special drawing rights stands as a step to strengthen financial resources. However, voluntary reallocation should be utilised to increase the share of resources available to countries in need.
The digital transformation, accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic, leads to radical changes in business processes and social life. Our 2023 Industry and Technology Strategy and National Artificial Intelligence Strategy, devised in line with our visions of ‘Digital Turkey’ and ‘National Technology Move’, show the importance we give to this transformation.
Digital technologies also bring risk factors along with benefits. The increased use of social media, e-commerce activities and digital platforms has added cyberattacks to the list of new threats. We, as the G20, in considering the least developed countries, should follow an inclusive approach to digitalisation, take measures against risks and increase our efforts to raise awareness.
Climate change–driven natural disasters, especially forest fires and floods, are becoming more frequent and cause loss of life and property. These events pose significant risks, such as curbing economic growth and sustainable development, deepening poverty and forcing people to migrate. In this respect, we urgently need to reach concrete and realistic solutions in the fight against climate change.
Sharing the burden
Like any global issue, it is essential that the fight against climate change be handled fairly and burden sharing between developed and developing countries be ensured. Drawing up a framework based on the principle of the common but differentiated responsibilities and relative capabilities will be key.
The world faces another humanitarian aid challenge. Afghanistan needs the support and solidarity of the international community. Turkey provides necessary support to the Afghan people in order to restore peace, stability and security in the country. The war in Syria is now in its 10th year and Turkey is hosting more than five million displaced people. Developments in Afghanistan have further increased the risk of an influx of people. It is clear that we need to exert all efforts to find permanent solutions to these problems.
I believe that the role of the G20, as the premier forum for international economic cooperation, has been better understood. Our cooperation will help us in our goal of creating a fairer world with peace, stability and prosperity. We, all G20 members, should be ready to undertake additional responsibilities to achieve our goals.