South Africa is so far the only permanent G20 member from the African continent, whose leaders are increasingly demanding a voice in global governance bodies.
The Ministers of Finance and Economy of Egypt, Ghana and Senegal have called for the granting of a permanent seat to the African Union (AU) within the G20 to better make the voice of the continent heard in this body of global governance, the Bloomberg agency reported on Tuesday July 19, citing a letter sent by the three African officials to the finance ministers and central bank governors of the G20.
“Africa’s presence as a permanent member through the African Union will strengthen the G20. Increasing the continent’s representation in G20 deliberations will allow for continuity and more responsive engagement,” said finance ministers from Ghana, Ken Ofori-Atta, Egypt, Mohamed Maait, and Senegalese minister of economy, Amadou Hott, in their letter.
The three officials also considered that a permanent representation of Africa in the G20 “will strengthen the continent’s commitment” to this global governance body bringing together the nineteen most developed economies on the planet and the European Union, as all African economies grapple with the economic impact of the war in Ukraine.
They also called for an immediate injection of liquidity into African economies through a new issue of special drawing rights [SDRs, the IMF’s foreign exchange reserve, Editor’s note], and the relaunch of the initiative to suspend the debt service (DSSI), a system created in 2020 by the G20 to relieve countries crumbling under the weight of debt.
South Africa is the only permanent member of the G20 from Africa. The continent’s leaders are increasingly demanding a voice in global governance bodies.
During a meeting held on Sunday 17 July with the Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Kristalina Georgieva, the Indonesian President and Chairman-in-Office of the G20, Joko Widodo, announced his intention to invite the African Union to take part in the Summit of Heads of State of the twenty most developed economies of the planet, scheduled for next November in Bali.
The G20, which proved to be very effective in 2008 at the time of the financial crisis, obtained some concrete results in issues as thorny as the fight against climate change, debt relief for the poorest countries and the taxation of multinationals .