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G20 and Nepal

G20 and Nepal

The G20 summit, presided over by India, concluded on Sunday, culminating in the release of the New Delhi Leaders Declaration. This landmark event saw a convergence of minds on a multitude of global issues.

The G20, which comprises 19 nations and the European Union, has recently expanded its ranks to welcome the African Union, making the group “G21.” 

Nepal, not being a member of this esteemed international economic forum, had no representation in the summit's proceedings. While Bangladesh also lacks official membership, India extended a coveted invitation to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, extending similar courtesy to Egypt, Mauritius, the Netherlands, Nigeria, Oman, Singapore, Spain, and the UAE. Foreign policy experts say that Nepal too could have secured a place at this influential gathering had there been more proactive diplomatic overtures by its government.

Nonetheless, Nepal remains tethered to the G20 process through its partial participation in preparatory meetings leading up to the summit. Finance Minister Prakash Sharan Mahat engaged with G20 finance ministers and central governors in July, highlighting the multifaceted challenges confronting least developed nations on a global scale.

Nepal’s vested interest in the G20 summit stems from several compelling factors. Firstly, the country’s prior engagement with G20 activities underscores its ongoing connection to the process. Secondly, the summit's host, India, aspires to assume a leadership role within the Global South, potentially affording Nepal new opportunities and perspectives.

Furthermore, Nepal’s vigilance concerning the G20 summit is warranted given the far-reaching implications of its decisions. The G20, representing a colossal 85 percent of global GDP, over 75 percent of worldwide trade, and nearly two-thirds of the global population, wields substantial influence. 

Ranjit Rae, former Indian ambassador to Nepal, says a multitude of domains offer potential avenues for Nepal to derive benefits from the G20's outcomes, including green energy, biofuels, and digital public infrastructure.

The G20’s commitment to addressing climate change and its consequences is of paramount importance to nations like Nepal. The summit's document outlines its intention to implement decisions made at COP27 regarding funding arrangements for assisting developing countries vulnerable to climate change's adverse effects, including the establishment of a fund. The support for the transitional committee and anticipation of recommendations for operationalizing these funding arrangements at COP28 are of particular relevance to Least Developed Countries (LDCs) and developing nations like Nepal.

Recalling the Glasgow climate pact, the G20 has also called upon developed countries to honor their commitment to doubling their collective provision of adaptation finance by 2025, building upon the foundation laid in 2019. This commitment holds promise for countries in need of financial resources for adaptation.

In addition to climate considerations, the arena of digital public infrastructure beckons. India's ambitious plans for a Global Digital Public Infrastructure Repository (GDPIR), a repository of digital public infrastructure shared voluntarily by G20 members and beyond, presents a unique avenue for Nepal to collaborate with G20 nations.

In sum, Nepal’s keen interest in the G20 summit is well-justified by the potential opportunities it presents across a spectrum of critical global issues, underscoring the nation's role in the international arena.

Issues in the declaration that matters us

  • Better integrate the perspectives of developing countries, including LDCs, LLDCs, and SIDS, into future G20 agenda and strengthen the voice of developing countries in global decision making.
  • Recognize the importance of WTO’s ‘Aid for Trade’ initiative to enable developing countries, notably LDCs, to effectively participate in global trade, including through enhanced local value creation.
  • Facilitate equitable access to safe, effective, quality-assured, and affordable vaccines, therapeutics, diagnostics, and other medical countermeasures, especially in Low-and Middle-income Countries (LMICs), LDCs and SIDS.
  • Accelerate actions to address environmental crises and challenges including climate change being experienced worldwide, particularly by the poorest and the most vulnerable, including in LDCs and SIDS.
  • Continue to support augmentation of capabilities of all countries, including emerging economies, in particular developing countries, LDCs and SIDS, for promoting disaster and climate resilience of infrastructure systems.
  • Extend strong support to Africa, including through the G20 Compact with Africa and G20 Initiative on supporting industrialization in Africa and LDCs. Hold further discussions to deepen cooperation between the G20 and other regional partners.
  • Increase resource needs of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) and FATF Style Regional Bodies and encourage others to do the same, including for the next round of mutual evaluations. Timely and global implementation of the revised FATF Standards on the transparency of beneficial ownership of legal persons and legal arrangements to make it more difficult for criminals to hide and launder ill-gotten gains.

Experts speak

Nepal should follow up on the outcomes 

Navita Srikant, Financial and Security Analyst 


Prime Minister Narendra Modi's message during the G20 India Summit emphasized "human-centric development" and the integration of perspectives from smaller states in global decision-making. Notably, the #G20LeadersNewDelhiDeclaration mentions LDCs six times. In South Asia alone, Bhutan, Nepal, and Bangladesh are on the brink of graduating from LDC status.

These three nations have high expectations from the #G20IndiaSummit, anticipating benefits such as a smoother transition from LDC graduation, improved access to markets, streamlined supply chains, food security, fertilizers, and support for clean energy. 

The declaration also garners support for crucial areas like "WTO's Aid for Trade," accessible and affordable healthcare, a Green Development Pact, Green Credit, and capacity-building for disaster and climate resilience. 

Nepal must now seize the opportunity and develop a clear and definitive Nepal-India road map for the next 10 years, seeking support for enhanced local value creation through comprehensive investments in manufacturing and the agricultural sector.

Furthermore, Nepal should explore the possibility of participating in the Partnership for Global Infrastructure and Investment (PGI).

Nepal should grab the opportunity and become a part of PGI

Binoj Basnyat, Political analyst 


Would India become an alternative to China  or a complimentary to the West led by the US in international diplomacy as the political-economy-security-technological order is shifting? The G21 has emerged as a connector between the East and the West, bridging the Global South with Africa and Europe via the Persian Gulf.

The IBSA forum, comprising three major, diverse democracies, has implications for international diplomacy. It's one reason for Chinese President Xi Jinping's absence from the G20 summit and reflects growing challenges to China's global political-economic aspirations.

The Partnership for Global Infrastructure and Investment (PGI), with a commitment of $200bn by 2027, presents itself as an alternative to China's Belt and Road Initiative. In this shifting landscape, Nepal should seize the opportunity and consider participation in the PGI.

India’s evolution from NAM to G20

Chandra Dev Bhatta, Geopolitical Analyst 


India's journey from the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) to the G20 is captivating. Sixty-five years ago, India's leadership brought NAM into the political spotlight. Today, under Prime Minister Narendra Modi's leadership, India has successfully hosted the G20 summit in New Delhi, marking a significant elevation of its position in international politics.

The inclusion of the African Union as a permanent member and representation from diverse organizations and countries further enhances India's position in world politics. The G20 now serves as a forum for discussing a wide array of global issues, distinguished by its consensual decision-making process, in contrast to a veto-based system.

With the transfer of G20 presidency to Brazil, another influential country from the Global South, the future of this intergovernmental organization looks exceedingly promising. India's leadership continues to shape and elevate its role on the world stage.

Clean energy will benefit Nepal

Ranjit Rae, former Indian Ambassador to Nepal


There are many areas of interest to countries like Nepal.I would pick digital public infrastructure, DRR, transition to clean green energy and fighting corruption and resilient supply chains. In addition Nepal could consider joining the Global Biofuels alliance. Also the IMEC corridor will benefit Nepal.

Depends on Nepal’s own ability to take advantage 

Sanjay Upadhay, Geopolitical Analyst 


The Delhi Declaration has placed considerable emphasis on important issues pertaining to developing countries like Nepal. These include clean energy, food security and digital economy, which broadly conform to our development priorities.  An India-Europe-Middle East corridor has been conceived as part of the Partnership for Global Infrastructure Investment (PGII), a G7 initiative. The corridor opens up the possibility for greater connectivity for Nepal. Much will depend on how these opportunities translate into projects and initiatives on the ground and Nepal’s own ability to take advantage of them.