This year, leading economies around the world gather under the umbrella theme of interconnectedness. It is a fitting theme in an increasingly interconnected world, with shared and concurrent crises affecting people in our countries and far beyond. It speaks to the value of all life on this planet, and our collective future.
The G20 remains a unique forum; bringing together developed and emerging economies alike, with proven success in addressing global challenges and steering the world away from economic downturn.
It is clear that the challenges that exist today can only be addressed by pulling together. Our planet is warming and our biodiversity is disappearing at alarming rates. In the aftermath of a pandemic that infected people and economies in every region of the globe, it is clearer than ever before that we need to build resilient supply chains, based on reliable partnerships and underpinned by respect for international rules and norms. And we need to continue developing those supply chains in areas such as clean energy and clean technology in order to fight climate change and fuel economic growth that benefits everyone. All of these challenges are inherently interconnected.
Peace and security are inevitably top of mind as a shared challenge once again – the geopolitical interconnection. One of the G20 members – also a member of the United Nations Security Council – is waging a war against a sovereign, independent country, in flagrant violation of the UN Charter and all it stands for. Russia’s war has taken the lives of thousands of people, forced millions out of their homes, and caused food and energy insecurity, while driving up the cost of living around the world. Because of our interconnectedness, some of the most vulnerable people are shouldering the burden of Vladimir Putin’s brutality, and we are all living in the shadow of his dangerous nuclear rhetoric, his erosion of a world order meant to keep us safe.
As a forum for international economic collaboration, the G20 cannot stand silent in the face of such aggression. We must stand for a durable peace solution that starts with Russia’s immediate withdrawal from Ukraine and respect for the UN Charter principles of sovereignty and territorial integrity. Balancing the pursuit of global cooperation with a swift end to Russia’s illegal war in Ukraine is crucial to maintaining the integrity and effectiveness of the G20.
FOR LASTING PEACE
As India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi says, today’s era is not the era of war. Instead, today’s era, characterised by these fundamentally interconnected challenges, must be an era of pulling together. We have to build a more peaceful world for future generations. We have to build the supply chains we need to build the clean economies of today and tomorrow. We have to drive economic growth, and drive down emissions at the same time. And we have to accelerate our progress to realise the UN Sustainable Development Goals and create a world where everyone has clean air to breathe, clean water to drink, and a real and fair chance of success. With just 12% of the SDGs on track, and many stalled or in regression, we all simply need to work harder. When we work together, we can raise the standard of living and secure a stable world now and into the future.
Canadians are watching. And with that in mind, I will keep working across borders to drive real progress. We need to take ambitious action now to keep 1.5°C of warming within reach. The world needs to act to protect more nature and reverse our biodiversity decline. Canada will work with the G20 to help build a global clean economy, with opportunities to develop globally competitive, reliable critical mineral value chains and create good, middle class jobs for people.
It is also clear that multilateral institutions need reform if we are to meet the demands of climate change and make up for lost progress on the SDGs. Canada particularly supports calls from our Caribbean and small island partners for assistance at scale and better tailored to the risks presented by more frequent and severe climate-related disasters – a problem they did not create but now bear the burden of.
We also need global financial institutions and a UN system that can deliver for all. Canada fully supports including the African Union in the G20. I will also call for investments to prevent pandemics like the one we just saw from ravaging lives and economies again and ensure that other historic epidemics, such as polio, are eradicated in our lifetimes. And on gender equality, I will be as loud and clear as always on the need to improve access to education and health resources for women and girls. That’s what Canadians stand for.
Canada is an architect of the G20, and we are committed to its success under India’s leadership this year, and its ability to continue delivering for people in the years to come.