The African Union (AU), the regional organization that represents 55 African countries, has been granted a permanent seat at the G20 table, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced on Saturday at the opening of the G20 leaders’ summit in New Delhi.
The move, which was welcomed by AU Chairperson Azali Assoumani, is a significant recognition of Africa’s role and potential in the world, as the continent is home to more than 1.3 billion people and the world’s largest free trade area. The AU joins the European Union as the only regional organization to have full membership in the G20, which comprises 19 countries and the EU.
Modi said that India’s G20 presidency this year has been guided by the spirit of “together with all”, both within and outside the country, and that inviting the AU to join the G20 was part of this inclusive vision. He also said that this period in the 21st century is the time to give the world a new direction.