Emergency G20 summit on Covid-19 on Thursday via video conference

WION New Delhi, Delhi, India Mar 24, 2020, 03.07 PM(IST) Written By: Sidhant Sibal

Representative image Photograph:( Reuters )

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G20 representing 86% of the global GDP is a forum that can play a leadership role. Coronavirus has become one of the most destabilising factors, economically, socially, politically all over the world. 

G20 leaders will meet via video conference on Thursday to discuss the coronavirus crisis. The idea of the summit was discussed by Indian PM Modi with other G20 leaders like Australian PM Scott Morrison & Chair of G20 Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman Al Saud. 

The meet will happen from 3:00 PM – 4:30 PM Arabian Standard Time (AST) and before that on Wednesday G20 Sherpas will meet. 

The Sherpa meet that will take place from 3:00 PM – 6:00 PM, AST. India will be represented by its G20 Sherpa Suresh Prabhu.

Speaking to WION last week, Suresh Prabhu said, "Our honourable Prime Minister has always taken a lead in dealing with global issues. 

G20, the grouping, representing 86% of the global GDP is a forum that can play a leadership role. Coronavirus has become one of the most destabilising factors, economically, socially, politically all over the world. A situation like this must have prevailed during the 2nd-second world war, businesses are shutting down, people are apprehensive."

Other G20 member countries have lauded India's role at the grouping regarding the need for a summit via video conference on coronavirus outbreak.

French envoy Emmanuel Lenain asked about the initiative had said, "We expect a lot from India, India is going to be the chair of G20 in 2022. In the run-up to this big year, we expect India to be very dynamic in raising the issue within G20."

PM Modi had also called for a SAARC video conference on the crisis which took place earlier this month. New Delhi announced a COVID emergency fund and said its rapid response teams are at the disposal of all SAARC countries.

All SAARC countries, barring Pakistan have announced contribution for SAARC COVID Fund. Total contribution by COVID SAARC Fund by India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Nepal, Afghanistan, Maldives & Bhutan stands at $18.3 million.