The African Union is set to become the G20’s newest member, officials said on Friday, after the bloc’s request received support from existing members assembled in India for a summit.
The G20 host country’s prime minister, Narendra Modi of India, demanded that the pan-African organization be admitted as a permanent member, claiming that emerging countries need more influence in international policy-making.
The initiative has received support from Washington, and the European Union announced its support on Friday.
“I look forward to welcoming the AU as a permanent member of the G20”, European Council president Charles Michel told reporters in New Delhi, where the two-day G20 summit begins on Saturday.
The Group of 20 major economies now comprises of 19 countries plus the European Union, accounting for around 85% of global GDP and two-thirds of the global population.
However, South Africa is now the only African G20 member.
Following the dissolution of the Organisation of African Unity, the AU was founded in Ethiopia in 2002.