G20 focuses on cooperation with Africa
On February 16 and 17, the G20 Foreign Ministers will convene for a meeting in Bonn organised by Germany’s G20 Presidency. The meeting will focus on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, crisis prevention and peace policy, and cooperation with Africa.
Enlarge image German Foreign Minister Sigmar (© Thomas Koehler/photothek.net) First major event hosted by Germany’s new Foreign Minister
Besides 20 Foreign Ministers international organisations will be represented at the meeting, too. “Germany will be a forum for global politics in the coming days,” German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel said about the upcoming meeting, which will also be his first major event as German Foreign Minister. Many of the participants will travel directly from Bonn to the annual Munich Security Conference.
“Shaping the global order – foreign policy beyond crisis management” will be the overarching theme of the meeting in Bonn. Recently, foreign policy has been preoccupied with addressing acute crises and conflicts. This informal meeting, however, is intended to examine long-term objectives and the ways in which foreign policy can tackle key global challenges. “Foreign policy is, and must be, more than crisis management,” Gabriel said prior to the meeting.
Cooperation within the framework of the G20
Enlarge image The city of Bonn will host the G20 Foreign Ministers Meeting (© dpa) The German Foreign Minister pointed out that no country in the world can tackle the major international problems of our time alone. He went on to emphasise that terrorism, water scarcity, climate change, forced migration and humanitarian emergencies cannot be resolved by isolation, but only through cooperation and joint strategies. That is, he said, what makes the G20 Summit so important. Together, the G20 nations account for almost two-thirds of the global population, more than four-fifths of gross world product and three-quarters of global trade. The world’s largest economies that are represented in the G20 bear special responsibility and must jointly address the root causes of conflicts, as well as the options for peaceful crisis prevention and conflict resolution, Gabriel went on to say.
Meeting will focus on the 2030 Agenda, peace and cooperation with Africa
The meeting will therefore address implementation of the UN’s 2030 Agenda and Sustainable Development Goals. The Agenda was adopted at a UN summit in September 2015 by all UN Member States. Civil society, too, played a key role in drawing up the Agenda. With its 17 goals, the Agenda promotes sustainability in the social, environmental and economic spheres. The G20 want to become a key driving force for implementation of this global project.
Enlarge image AU soldiers in Sudan (2005) (© picture-alliance/dpa) Another focus is the long-term sustainment of peace in the world today. Prevention and forward-looking foreign policy will be discussed in this regard.
A third focus of the meeting is cooperation with Africa. Together with an African Union representative, the G20 will discuss what general conditions are needed to combat poverty, strengthen state institutions and ensure that more is done to harness the potential of many African states.
Shaping an interconnected world
The meeting of Foreign Ministers is being organised by Germany in connection with its G20 Presidency. The major event of this year’s Presidency will be the summit meeting of G20 Heads of State and Government in Hamburg on July 7 and 8.
The motto of Germany’s G20 Presidency is “shaping an interconnected world”, and discussions centre around “building resilience”, “improving sustainability” and “assuming responsibility".