Kenya has welcomed the addition of the African Union to the G20.
President William Ruto Saturday hailed the move saying it will increase the voice of Africa, visibility, and influence on the global stage and provide a platform to advance the common interest of our people.
“This fits perfectly with the resolutions of the just-concluded Africa Climate Summit, including the reform of international financial institutions and multilateral development banks,” he said on X, formerly known as Twitter.
Kenya welcomes the addition of the African Union — the fastest growing continent in the world — to the G20. This will increase the voice of Africa, visibility, and influence on the global stage and provide a platform to advance the common interest of our people.
This fits… pic.twitter.com/LKspEIAU9v
— William Samoei Ruto, PhD (@WilliamsRuto) September 9, 2023
The African Union, a continental body of 55 member states, now has the same status as the European Union – the only regional bloc with a full membership. Its previous designation was “invited international organisation”.
The widely-anticipated move underscores India’s wide-ranging agenda to elevate the global multilateral forum’s focus on the Global South in its presidency of the G20 this year.
The 55-member bloc of African nations joins the European Union as only the second regional organization to become a permanent member of the G20. Its previous designation was “invited international organisation”.
“India’s G-20 presidency has become a symbol of inclusion, both within the country and beyond, representing the spirit of ‘Sabka Saath’,” Modi said in his opening remarks, according to an official translation provided by India’s Ministry of External Affairs, referring to a “spirit of togetherness.”
“It was in the spirit of ‘Sabka Saath’ that India proposed permanent membership for the African Union in the G-20,” he added.
With an embrace after the announcement, Modi welcomed AU Chairperson Azali Assoumani and offered him a place at the conference table for permanent members of the G20.
The AU chair is rotated annually among the continent’s five regions. Assoumani is the president of the Comoros, an archipelago off the east coast of Africa.
“Delighted the African Union was granted full membership in the G20,” Charles Michel, president of the European Council, said on X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter.
“EU has been a steadfast supporter of this initiative and I am pleased to have championed it from the very beginning with Macky Sall,” he added.
Sall is Senegal’s president and was the 2022 chair of the African Union.