PM terms COVID biggest challenge since WW-II; calls for new global index post-corona
New Delhi/Riyadh: Terming the COVID-19 pandemic an important turning point in history of humanity and the biggest challenge the world is facing since World War II, Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the G20 summit on Saturday called for a new global index based on talent, technology, transparency and trusteeship towards the planet in the post-corona world.
Modi also said that “Work from Anywhere” is a new normal in the post-COVID world and suggested creation of a virtual G20 secretariat as a follow up and documentation repository.
Saudi Arabia’s King Salman opened the Group of 20 Summit as the coronavirus pandemic overshadowed this year’s gathering of heads of state that is being held in the virtual format. India is scheduled to host the G20 summit in 2022.
“Had a very fruitful discussion with G20 leaders. Coordinated efforts by the largest economies of the world will surely lead to faster recovery from this pandemic. Thanked Saudi Arabia for hosting the Virtual Summit,” Prime Minister Modi tweeted.
At the G20 Summit, Modi said that he put forward a need to develop a new global index based on talent, technology, transparency and trusteeship towards the planet.
Multi-skilling and re-skilling to build a talent pool will enhance dignity and resilience of workers, he said, adding that the value of new technologies should be measured by their benefit to humanity.
“Transparency in our processes helps in inspiring our societies to fight crisis collectively and with confidence. Spirit of trusteeship towards planet Earth will inspire us for a healthy and holistic lifestyle,” he said in a series of tweets.
The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), in a statement on Modi’s participation in the G20, said the prime minister termed the COVID-19 pandemic as an important turning point in history of humanity and the biggest challenge the world is facing since World War II.
He called for a decisive action by the G20, not limited to economic recovery, jobs and trade, but focussing on preserving planet Earth, noting that “all of us are trustees of humanity’s future”.
The prime minister called for a new Global Index for the post-corona world that comprises four key elements – creation of a vast talent pool, ensuring that technology reaches all segments of the society, transparency in systems of governance, and dealing with Mother Earth with a spirit of trusteeship, according to the MEA.
Based on this, the G20 can lay the foundation of a new world, he said.
At the G20 summit, the prime minister called for greater transparency in governance systems which he said “will inspire our citizens to deal with shared challenges and enhance their confidence”.
Modi also offered India’s IT prowess to further develop digital facilities for efficient functioning of the G20.
The prime minister underscored that in the past few decades, while there has been an emphasis on capital and finance, the time has come to focus on multi-skilling and re-skilling to create a vast human talent pool.
This would not only enhance dignity of citizens but would make citizens more resilient to face crises, Modi said.
He also said that any assessment of new technology should be based on its impact on ease of living and quality of life.
The summit saw participation of respective heads of state or government of 19 member countries, European Union, other invited countries and international organisations.
Prime Minister Modi congratulated Saudi Arabia and its leadership for its successful presidency of the G20 this year and for organising the second G20 Summit in 2020 through a virtual format despite the challenges and obstacles posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The summit under the Saudi presidency centred on the theme ‘Realizing Opportunities of 21st Century for All’.
The agenda of the summit is spread out over two days with two sessions focused on overcoming the pandemic, economic recovery and restoring jobs, and building an inclusive, sustainable and resilient future.