By Taha Sakr
It seems that October, as well as November of this year full of events – which we previously could not document except within decades or even within the events of a whole century.
Both months will witness more events as preparations for the US elections, as well as the holding of the G20 summit in Saudi Arabia, which will be held Days 21 – 22 November 2020.
However, the intensive preparations and meetings for the G20 summit coincide with the Corona pandemic, whose repercussions have produced many challenges.
This exceptional situation has put the Saudi and global business sectors facing great challenges, which calls for the necessity of offering innovative solutions and ideas that contribute to the success of the summit and thus contribute to the return of prosperity to the global economy.
The Kingdom’s G20 presidency came at a time when the world is in dire need of a voice of wisdom, reason, calm and peace, to direct the global economy to address the negative phenomena caused by the Corona pandemic.
I do not think these few lines can explain the gains that the Kingdom, the Arabs, and the world will gain from Saudi Arabia’s hosting of these meetings, in which we will see the tremendous effects of its decisions on the Arab, Middle Eastern, and global levels for sure, and for many years to come.
Special meetings and preparations inside Saudi Arabia do not stop these days. Rather, benefiting from global expertise and settling them in the areas of interests of this summit, as well as opening the way for constructive and open discussions, whether in the Saudi media or seminars held through video-conference dialogues among countries on common issues related to the stability of the global economy.
Within the Kingdom, many preparatory activities have taken place for this summit over the past months. The Kingdom’s G20 Presidency Committees, in cooperation with the Ministry of Education, launched a cultural program under the slogan “Seizing the opportunities of the twenty-first century for all,” which aims to introduce the Kingdom’s presidential year to the G20.
The objectives of this program are to reflect the pivotal role that the Kingdom plays during the year of its chairmanship of the group, which is related to addressing global challenges in various fields by developing effective policies.
In addition to connecting Saudi youth with millions of their counterparts, in different parts of the world, which will play a role Great in promoting basic human values among youth by adopting the concept of global citizenship and consolidating the values of communication and cooperation.
I am also not here to demonstrate through these lines the preparatory successes for the summit or to place them in comparison with previous summits, as the comparison is unfair as this version headed by the Kingdom surpassed the previous two editions held in Buenos Aires, Argentina in 2018, and Tokyo in Japan in 2019, from In terms of the number of participating cities and the number of countries that supported the final statement, as I said earlier, 39 cities around the world supported the preparatory final statement of the group headed by the Kingdom.
It is the largest number of support for the final statement in the group’s history compared to 30 cities ’support for the Tokyo statement in 2019 and 34 cities for the Buenos Aires statement in 2018.
The summit of the mayors of the virtual group cities headed by Saudi Arabia was also attended by 11 city mayors, which is a record in the history of the group, with 8 in each of The Tokyo Summit in 2019, and the Buenos Aires Summit in 2018, as well as 31 participants, participated in what is known as (Knowledge Partner) during the period of the Kingdom’s presidency of the summit, which is a record in the history of the group, as nine knowledge partners participated during hosting the city of Tokyo in 2019 and 11 knowledge partners during hosting Buenos Aires in 2018, which indicates the active role of Saudi diplomacy and its success in leading the G20 meetings.
Moreover, it indicates the distinctive global cooperative approach that Saudi Arabia has established since assuming the presidency of the G20 in facing all challenges as it was able to mobilize a unified collective position for the whole world.
Since announcing the Kingdom’s presidency of the G20 group, Saudi Arabia has made a fundamental change in the history of the group by forming three specialized working groups under the name: (Circular Carbon Economy Group), (Thriving Communities Group for All Population), and (Nature-based Urban Solutions Group), which reflects its commitment to establishing best practices designated to complement the goals for which the G20 was created.
This constructive cooperation between cities and knowledge partners resulted in the issuance of more than 1000 pages of studies and 160 recommendations included in 15 working papers, as well as the formation of working groups on the Covid 19 pandemic to discuss its implications for cities and provide solutions to the challenges they face, in which 12 cities and 7 international organizations participated.
It collected 32 studies on how cities deal with the pandemic and a survey of cities that represent more than 75 million people, as part of the Kingdom’s commitment to unify the international community to face the repercussions of this pandemic on our planet.
The Saudi Business Connect group, the official representative of the business community of the G20, has also submitted 25 policy recommendations to the G20 leaders, calling for action and adopting bold and decisive cooperation policies to put growth on a resilient and sustainable path.
This was stated in a report entitled ‘Seizing the Opportunities of the Twenty-first Century For all », those twenty-five recommendations will lead to reviving the global economy by focusing on several key areas such as digitization, free and fair trade, finance, sustainable infrastructure, empowerment of businesswomen, integrity, and compliance, climate change, sustainability, the future of work and education.
It also includes current challenges medium and long-term development goals to build a workforce that can withstand technical, health, and economic risks, increase financing for sustainable development and seek economic diversification. The recommendations of the Saudi Business Continuity Group stressed the need to accelerate work to eliminate carbon emissions to zero and to promote energy systems to be cleaner.
It also recommended improving the financial technology environment, supporting digital infrastructure, developing smart cities, and making use of technologies to manage risks related to corruption and fraud.
The proposed policy recommendations from the Business Connectivity Group will be formally presented to the G20 during the summit.
The G20 summit is determined through its decisions about what the world will look like in the future, and how the health, economic and social phenomena that plague the world today will be addressed, especially as the world nears finding a vaccine for the Coronavirus.
Further, besides that the summit will discuss the necessity of ensuring the health, social and economic rights of workers, as well as efforts to preserve the jobs of individuals as a basis for maintaining economic stability and a starting point for maintaining financial stability, as we have come to see the goals envisaged for the G20 and what it plans to do for a better independent global economy.
Plans indicated the creation of new jobs around the world and the updating of global concepts about the nature of work, especially with the introduction of artificial intelligence and remote work and the need to keep pace with these changes through developing skills.