India Calls For Inclusion Of Digital Public Infrastructure In G20 Summit

The G20 Leaders’ Summit will be held in New Delhi from September 9-10.

New Delhi:

India is pushing for the inclusion of digital public infrastructure (DPI) as a major takeaway from the upcoming G20 summit in New Delhi. 

DPI is a set of essential digital services and technologies that enable countries to deliver economic opportunities and social services to all residents in a safe and efficient manner.

The G20 Global Partnership for Financial Inclusion (GPFI) document, prepared by the World Bank, has praised the transformative impact of DPI in India over the past decade under Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government.

Praising India’s approach to DPI, the World Bank document notes that India has achieved in just six years what would have taken about five decades.

“In the last decade, India has built one of the world’s largest digital Government-To-Person (G2P) architectures leveraging DPI. This approach has supported transfers amounting to about $361 billion directly to beneficiaries from 53 central government ministries through 312 key schemes. As of March 2022, this had resulted in a total savings of $33 billion, equivalent to nearly 1.14 percent of GDP,” the document notes. 

In May 2023 alone, there were more than 9.41 billion UPI transactions, with a total value of about Rs 14.89 trillion. The total value of UPI transactions for the fiscal year 2022-23 was nearly 50 percent of India’s nominal GDP.

The G20 Leaders’ Summit will be held in New Delhi from September 9-10. The summit will be attended by over 30 heads of state and government, as well as top officials from the European Union and invited guest countries. Fourteen heads of international organizations are also expected to attend.

Rajeev Chandrasekhar, the Union Minister of State for Electronics and Information Technology, told NDTV recently that the government has been making a conscious effort to incorporate technology into governance since 2014. He also stated that the Centre will continue these efforts by connecting all public services to digital infrastructure.

With world leaders converging on the national capital for the G20 summit, India is expected to push for DPI.

“One of the amazing things about India’s presidency of the G20 has been how centre-stage the DPI conversation has become. The India case study and the use of technology under PM Narendra Modi to transform governance, democracy and the lives of Indian citizens… has really caught the attention of all of these countries, including the big, powerful G20 nations,” the minister said. 

Additionally, India is also championing the voice of the Global South at the G20 summit. The country has been pushing for greater representation of developing countries in the G20 process and has called for the inclusion of the African Union as a permanent member.

PM Modi has been a vocal advocate for the inclusion of the African Union in the G20. In June, he wrote to the leaders of the G20 countries, urging them to grant the African Union full membership at the upcoming summit in New Delhi.

The proposal to grant the African Union full membership in the G20 was formally included in the draft communique for the summit during the third G20 Sherpas meeting in Hampi, Karnataka, in July.

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