The G20 Summit takes place in Indonesia The G20 Summit takes place in Indonesia  (AFP or licensors)

G20 to meet in Bali to promote just development in crippled world

As the G20 intergovernmental forum meets in Bali next week to address major issues related to the global economy, the President of the Indonesian Chamber of Commerce highlights that the B20 and the R20 taking place on the sidelines will provide precious input for collaborative decision-making and long-term vision.

By Luca Collodi and Linda Bordoni

The eyes of the world are on Indonesia next week for the 2022 Group of Twenty Bali Summit (G20), which comprises 19 countries and the European Union.

The high-profile event sees world leaders gather to discuss major issues related to the global economy, such as international financial stability, climate change mitigation, and sustainable development. Concurrently, the Business 20 (B20) and the Religion Forum (R20) will contribute relevant input to spur economic growth and promote solidarity and respect among the diverse peoples, cultures and religions of the world.

In particular, the R20 aims to help ensure that religion in the 21st-century functions as a genuine and dynamic source of solutions, rather than division. Its main aims are to prevent the "weaponization" of identity; curtail the spread of communal hatred; promote solidarity and respect and foster the emergence of a just and harmonious world order, founded on equal rights and dignity of every human being.

Politics and prosperity

Arsjad Rasjid, Chairperson of the Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, told Vatican Radio that this G20 Summit comes at a time when the world is grappling with high inflation, crippling food and energy costs and potential social tension.

Listen to the interview with Mr. Arsjad Rasjid

Amongst the reasons for all of these are the ongoing war in Ukraine and the Covid-19 pandemic that has affected so many vital aspects of human life, from the economic to the environmental to the political.

That’s why, he said, alongside the G20, the B20 and the R20 are so crucial at this time.

“We cannot just think about politics, we have to focus on the economy, on how to create the conditions for prosperity for all people”, he explained, pointing out the importance of fostering economic development “with values.”

“This is why the religious interfaith discussion is very important,” he said.

Unity in diversity

Indonesia is a country with a Muslim majority, and Mr. Rasjid believes it can do much to promote a culture of “unity in diversity.”

“We are open to all religions. We have Christianity, we have Buddhism, we have Hinduism,” he continued, expressing his firm belief that it is all about respect for one another, especially at this crucial time in the world.

“We need a new world order, especially after the pandemic,” he said, noting that Covid-19 affected everyone, regardless of political or religious affiliations.

“It is like God was reminding all us, humans, that we need to work together,” he said.

United for the future

Regarding the issue of climate change, Mr. Rasjid said it is crucial: “We all live in this world together, and there is no division of climate.”

Climate, he said, is “not like countries with borders; climate is borderless. And in order for us to fix the climate, we need to be united. We need to work together. It belongs to all people.”

Care for the planet, he said, is care for the lives of people and looking out for the next generation.

“I do believe God created the earth for us, […] and it is for us to make sure that we care for the earth, particularly the climate,” he said.

A global conversation

Regarding the presence of specific heads of state, Mr. Rasjid said he doesn’t think it is important whether the Russian president is present or not, rather: “what is important are the conversations” that need to take place.

Leaders and delegates, he said, need not to think only of politics and egos, but about the people.

“At the end of the day, it's about people,” he explained, highlighting the need for a conversation in which all parties and all sides take part.

Even regarding the war in Ukraine, “That's a conversation that we should have, all of us together,” he continued, noting that “This is a global conversation because Russia and the US cannot solve it on their own."

Values and politics

Finally, Mr. Rasjid elaborated on the importance of injecting political discussions with spiritual values and with the force of interfaith dialogue.

Spiritual and religious values have an important role in any economic development, he said, “because at the end of the day, if all the leaders of the world agree on how to make prosperity possible for all people so that there are no more poor people, that would be the key factor of any economic development.”

So, he concluded, interfaith dialogue has to be part of the conversation at all levels in order to be able to establish a new,  post-pandemic, world order.

11 November 2022, 15:44