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African Union in G20

GS Paper 2

 Syllabus: International Relations: Multilateral Organizations


Source: IE


Context: The African Union (AU) became a new permanent member of the G20 during the 18th G20 Heads of State and Government Summit in New Delhi, just three months after India proposed its inclusion.


About AU:

AboutThe African Union (AU) is a continental body consisting of 55 member states in Africa.
FormationIn 1963, the Organization of African Unity (OAU) was founded to promote cooperation among African states.
In 2002, the OAU was succeeded by the AU with a goal to accelerate economic integration of the continent.
Objectives of the AUThe AU emphasizes greater unity and solidarity among African countries. It promotes political and socio-economic integration, peace, stability, security, and human rights.
Achievements of AUAfrican Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA): Established in 2018, it seeks to create a single continental market for goods and services.
Diplomatic Achievement: AU established a mission in Beijing, strengthening ties with China, Africa’s largest trading partner. It played a key role in brokering a peace deal between the Ethiopian Government and the Tigray People’s Liberation Front.
Women’s Economic Financial Inclusion: AU introduced a 10-year continental declaration for gender equality and women’s empowerment.
ChallengesUnconstitutional Hold on Power: At least 32 military coups or coup attempts since 2013; five out of seven attempts since 2020 succeeded.
Disregard for the Rule of Law: Democratically elected governments crackdown on civil society organizations and the media.
Significance of AU’s Inclusion in G20The AU’s membership in the G20 offers an opportunity to reshape global trade, finance, and investment structures. It provides African interests and perspectives with a voice and visibility in the G20, potentially influencing global policy decisions.
Indian-African RelationsSocial Infrastructure: India-Africa cooperation involves education, health, and skills enhancement at various levels. India-Africa Partnership (Achievements, Challenges and Roadmap 2030)
Common Geo-Political Interests: India and Africa share interests in UN reforms, counter-terrorism, peacekeeping, and cybersecurity.
Economic Cooperation: Trade amounted to USD 63.3 billion in 2018-19, contributing to economic ties. Asia-Africa Growth Corridor – an economic cooperation agreement between India, Japan and multiple African countries.
Opportunities in India-Africa RelationsAddressing Food Security: India and Africa can cooperate to ensure food and nutritional security, leveraging India’s agricultural expertise.
Combating Neo-Colonialism: Differentiating from neo-colonial approaches, India focuses on building local capacities and equal partnerships.
Preventing Global Rivalries: As global players engage with Africa, India and Africa can prevent rival ambitions and maintain cooperation.


To know about detailed India-Africa ties: Click Here


Having become a member of G20, AU should use this opportunity to address constitutional violations firmly and consistently. Address root causes of coups, such as corruption and insecurity, to deter military interference. Utilize natural resources for economic growth and empower citizens.


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Mains Links:

 “If the last few decades were Asia’s growth story, the next few are expected to be Africa’s.” In light of this statement, examine India’s influence in Africa in recent years.  (UPSC 2021)