what is the group, which countries are part of and what is it for

The United States wants to exclude Russia from the G20 – group of the 19 largest economies in the world and the European Union. Russia says that “wouldn’t be fatal”, while China advocates that the Russians be in the group. But is an exclusion of a G20 member really possible and relevant?

what is the group

In practice, the G20 represents the gathering of the main actors of the world economy to work together and avoid crises, since trade and the measures taken by one country can affect the others, due to globalization.

According to the organization itself, the G20 account for 80% of the entire Gross Domestic Product (GDP) on the planet, 75% of world trade and 60% of the population. The group’s presidency rotates among the members and the position has a symbolic character.

Formed in 1999, the group initially brought together only the finance ministers of the countries after the financial crises that emerged in Asia, Russia and Latin America. But, over time, topics such as sustainability and the presence of world leaders have become recurrent.

Leaders attending the G20 meeting toss coins at the Fontana di Trevi in ​​Rome.  Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro did not attend the event - REUTERS/Guglielmo Mangiapane - REUTERS/Guglielmo Mangiapane

G20 leaders meeting at the Fontana di Trevi in ​​Rome (Italy) in 2021

Image: REUTERS/Guglielmo Mangiapane

In the context of the crisis caused by the war in Ukraine, in a world still experiencing a Covid-19 pandemic, meetings between economic powers are seen as important to avoid a recession in the global economy, since each country ‘depends on ‘ of others in some sense.

In Europe, for example, 40% of the natural gas used comes from Russia, which accounts for around 23% of fertilizer imports from Brazil, which currently feeds around 800 million people worldwide.

Who can take part?

In addition to the economic bloc of the European Union, the following countries participate in the group:

Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Republic of Korea, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Turkey, United Kingdom and United States.

Spain is also regularly invited. In addition, other countries or international organizations may be invited to participate in the discussions.

Who wants to leave Russia?

Countries such as the United Kingdom and Australia question the participation of Russians in the G20, as does US President Joe Biden, who said yesterday that Russia “has to leave” the G20. The idea is related to the sanctions that countries have already implemented against Russia because of the invasion of Ukraine.

US President Joe Biden speaks about funds to help Ukraine, in Washington, D.C. on March 16, 2022. Nicholas Kamm/AFP - Nicholas Kamm/AFP

US President Joe Biden wants Russia out of the G20

Image: Nicholas Kamm/AFP

On the other hand, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said it would not be “fatal” for Russia to be excluded from the group.

Brazilian Foreign Minister Carlos França told the Federal Senate yesterday that the government does not agree to exclude Russia from the G20, as the measure would be “illegal under international law”. China has also taken a stand and said that it is not in favor of the Russians leaving.

Is it possible to exclude a member of the G20?

Theoretically, it is possible to exclude a member of the G20, but it is unlikely that the Russians will leave, due to the impasse between the countries.

As Biden himself stated yesterday during a meeting of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) in Brussels, the exclusion of Russia “depends on the G20”. Following the same line of thought, Chinese diplomacy spokesman Wang Wenbin said that “no member [do G20] has the right to expel another country”.

The next G20 summit is scheduled for the end of the year, in Indonesia, the country that currently chairs the group. Yesterday, Indonesia’s ambassador to the United Nations, Dian Triansyah Djani, told the press that all members of the group had already been invited to the meeting, including Russia.

About Abhishek Pratap

Food maven. Unapologetic travel fanatic. MCU's fan. Infuriatingly humble creator. Award-winning pop culture ninja.

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