The Rise of the Global South: Empowering Developing Nations for a Sustainable Future

The Rise of the Global South: Empowering Developing Nations for a Sustainable Future
The Rise of the Global South: Empowering Developing Nations for a Sustainable Future

The ongoing war in Ukraine has brought the term “Global South” to the forefront, as several influential nations in Africa, Asia, and Latin America show reluctance in aligning themselves with NATO. The Global South encompasses a diverse array of countries primarily located in the southern hemisphere, spanning Latin America, Africa, Asia, and the Pacific region. It signifies a convergence of political, geopolitical, and economic resemblances among these nations, which historically have faced numerous obstacles such as poverty, political instability, and underdevelopment. However, in recent decades, the Global South has emerged as a powerful driving force behind economic growth, social development, and the demand for equitable representation on the global stage.

The term “Global South” was initially introduced by political activist Carl Oglesby in 1969 but gained significant popularity following the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991, which marked the end of the “Second World” era. Prior to this, developing nations were often labeled as the “Third World,” a term coined by Alfred Sauvy in 1952. Unfortunately, the term “Third World” became associated with notions of poverty, instability, and negative stereotypes perpetuated by the West. In contrast, the Global South represents a more inclusive and nuanced understanding of these nations and their aspirations for progress.

According to the PwC report titled ‘The long view: how will the global economic order change by 2050,’ the world economy is projected to double in size by 2042. This growth will predominantly be driven by emerging market and developing countries, with the E7 economies (Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, Mexico, Russia, and Turkey) expected to grow at an average annual rate of around 3.5% over the next 34 years. In contrast, the advanced G7 nations (Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK, and the US) are anticipated to grow at a significantly lower rate of around 1.6%. These projections highlight the shifting economic landscape and the increasing significance of the Global South in shaping the global economic order.

To counter the adverse effects of geopolitical tensions on development priorities, India, as a representative of the Global South, emphasizes the urgent need for fundamental reforms in major international organizations. These reforms should aim to provide greater representation and voice to the concerns of the developing world, aligning with the realities of the 21st century. Notably, comprehensive reform of the United Nations Security Council and the Bretton Woods institutions is deemed crucial to ensure equitable decision-making and inclusivity in global affairs.

Recognizing the value of sharing development experiences among nations, India proposes the establishment of a “Global-South Center of Excellence.” This institution will serve as a platform for research on development solutions and best practices from member countries, facilitating their scaling and implementation across the Global South. Leveraging India’s expertise in various domains such as digital public goods, space technology, and nuclear energy, the center aims to empower developing nations in their pursuit of sustainable development by facilitating knowledge-sharing and capacity-building.

Additionally, India intends to launch the “Global-South Science & Technology Initiative” to ensure that other developing nations can benefit from its remarkable advancements in space technology, nuclear energy, and other scientific domains. This initiative will foster collaboration and enable the sharing of expertise, research findings, and technological advancements among developing countries. By promoting technological self-reliance and accelerating development in crucial areas, this initiative aims to contribute to the well-being of humanity and support the sustainable growth of the Global South.

Recognizing the significance of diplomatic collaboration and knowledge exchange, India proposes the establishment of the “Global-South Young Diplomats Forum.” This platform will bring together young diplomats from developing countries, fostering dialogue, sharing experiences, and enhancing diplomatic cooperation. By nurturing future leaders in international relations, this forum aims to strengthen the diplomatic voice of the Global South and promote collective action on shared challenges.

Education plays a vital role in driving development and empowering individuals. In alignment with this belief, India plans to institute “Global-South Scholarships” for students from developing countries, offering them opportunities to pursue higher education in India. These scholarships aim to provide talented individuals from the Global South with access to quality education, contributing to human capital development and fostering overall prosperity and well-being within the region.