Global South Summit 2023: Open world map. Divide it into North and South. There is a clear-cut difference in wealth distribution pattern. Global North has gobbled up a major chunk of resources while the South is far behind. It is time to course correct. Just like the US took all other Global North with it, the South too needs a good leader. India looks a viable option for sure.
Voice of Global South Summit
Between 12 and 13 January, 2023, India is organising a ‘Voice of Global South Summit. Its theme is “Unity of Voice, Unity of Purpose”. A total of 120 countries have been invited to participate in this virtual summit. All of these countries fall under one of developing countries, least-developed countries, underdeveloped countries and low-income economies. India being the President of G20 and SCO has taken the initiative to raise collective voice.
Talking about India’s responsibility, Dr. S Jaishankar, India’s External Affairs Minister said, “Today, developing countries are worried due to issues like rising prices of oil, food and fertilisers. They are also concerned about mounting debt and worsening economic conditions. Thus, it is our duty to become the voice of such countries, known as the global South in diplomatic terms,”. These words echo in PM Modi’s opening remarks at the Global South Summit as well. He told participating countries that even though they did not create the problem, they should strive towards solving them.
There are complications with such efforts. For one, if countries in the Global South just cover up for the North’s past faults, it will incentivise them to create more havoc. Why take responsibility when someone else is there to pay the price? This is why the concept of South-South cooperation needs rejuvenation.
In the past, taking support from the North led by the US has resulted in some sort of compromise, either on geographical sovereignty or economic one. The guiding principles of South-South cooperation is free of this vice. They are respect for national sovereignty, national ownership, independence, equality, non-conditionality, non-interference in domestic affairs and mutual benefit.
Over the last few decades, some key initiatives have set the ball rolling. BRICS is one such example where a largely developing world has come together to cooperate. IBSA, which is BRICS minus China and Russia, is another example of South-South cooperation. Financial instruments include New Development Bank, Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank and Contingency Reserve Agreement (CRA) by BRICS nations. Plethora of more such initiatives is taking shape in the African Continent too.
China has killed its Chances
But there is a problem with it. The problem is bigger than colonisation by western countries. It is the fear of colonisation by China, one of our own in the Global South. China’s Belt and Road initiative, establishing its own Special Economic Zones in the region only turned out to be a neo-colonial attempt by the Communist regime.
China has not subscribed to the guiding principles of South-South cooperation one bit. It is continuously compromising with sovereign boundaries of nations, in its vicinity as well as those located far away from it. Possibly, it sees the peaceful rise of India and wants to pre-emptively counter it.
It is kind of ironic in the sense that China is using authoritarian tactics on countries whose whole purpose of coming together is avoiding authority. Naturally, a lot of them are getting fed up with China. The Communist nation’s attempt to become the leader of the Global South has fallen on its feet. The last nail in the coffin was Covid-19 and China’s supply of faulty vaccines to these countries.
On the other hand, India’s Vaccine Maitri is largely commended. India is also fighting to balance the World Trade regime. Piyush Goyal had led from the front at WTO. Indian Ocean Rim Association and International Solar Alliance are other key initiatives in which India is playing a crucial role. Moreover, India is also making a mark in the strategically important defence arena by emerging as a weapon exporter. Major chunk of made-in-India arms are being supplied to countries falling in the category of Global South.
The stage is set for India. It would have been much better if China had come together to cooperate. Sadly, it is engaged in one-upmanship against India.
Support us to strengthen the ‘Right’ ideology of cultural nationalism by purchasing the best quality garments from TFI-STORE.COM