Global South urged to support transition to cleaner forms of energy
Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator Kamina Johnson Smith. Photo: JIS

KINGSTON, Jamaica - Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator Kamina Johnson Smith, says it is important for countries of the Global South to support the scaling up of the transition to cleaner and sustainable forms of energy.

“We encourage elevation on the G-20 agenda of similar pragmatic policies and programmes supportive of energy transition by fiscally constrained developing countries,” she said.

The Minister was speaking at a recent special virtual summit, ‘Voice of Global South Summit’, an initiative of India, under the theme ‘Unity of Voice, Unity of Purpose’.

India assumed the Presidency of the Group of 20 (G-20), December 1, 2022. More than 120 countries participated in the two-day Summit, where they shared their perspectives and priorities.

The Minister said that Jamaica has been making strides towards loosening its dependence on imported petroleum fuels while embracing clean, renewable energies and greater levels of energy efficiency.

“In this light, we have leveraged support derived from our membership of the International Solar Alliance,” she added.

The Minister emphasised the importance of food and energy security, the fight against climate change, and recommended the sharing of models across the regions as well as technical cooperation among countries, “to promote increased food production and trade and increased availability of inputs for the Agricultural and Fisheries sectors”.

Johnson Smith cited the food insecurity facing the world’s most vulnerable and said the situation was worsened by “climate extremes, economic shocks, conflicts and disruptions to global supply chains”.

“Solutions lie only in innovative action, partnerships and collaborative work at every level, to strengthen the resilience of food systems in developing countries,” Senator Johnson Smith said.

She congratulated the Government of India for assuming the Presidency of the G-20.

“Jamaica is confident that India’s G-20 Presidency will pave the way for more robust, collective action for sustainable development and stability in this fractured international landscape. We look forward to further productive engagement,” The Minister said.

India’s High Commissioner to Jamaica, Runsung Masakui, said as India begins its Presidency, the aim is to amplify the voice of the Global South.

He said that India’s ongoing Presidency of the G-20 provides a special and strong opportunity for those countries that are not part of the group to share their ideas and expectations.

The High Commissioner said that India will work to ensure that the inputs generated from partner countries in the Global South Summit deliberations receive due recognition globally.

The priority areas discussed at the Summit were Financing People-Centric Development; Balancing Growth with Environment-Friendly Lifestyle; Priorities of the Global South – Ensuring a conducive Environment, Energy Security and Development; Cooperation to Build Resilient Healthcare Systems; Human Resource Development and Capacity Building; Developing Synergies in the Global South – Trade, Technology, Tourism and Resources; and G-20 Suggestions for India’s Presidency.

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