G20 Leaders' Side Event: Safeguarding the Planet

“Together we can reach our goal of protecting lives, livelihoods and shaping a better world to realize the opportunities for the 21st century for all.


Riyadh,  22, 2020 : Saudi Arabia hosted the side event on Safeguarding the Planet during the second day of the summit. The event was held virtually and led by the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud.


The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud opened the side event, indicating G20 commitments towards safeguarding the planet. The Saudi G20 Presidency is driving an ambitious approach to Circular Carbon Economy (CCE) to manage greenhouse emissions across the world and industries to protect the planet:


“Your Majesties, Your Excellencies, Your Highnesses,


“It is my pleasure to welcome you to this G20 summit side-event about Pandemic Preparedness and response.


“The world is facing an unprecedented global health challenge on people, communities, and economies.


“From the onset of the pandemic and in an attempt to jumpstart the global response, we met in an extraordinary summit last March where we all took swift and collective actions to counter this crisis. We continue to do so.


“The pandemic has demonstrated that international cooperation is the optimal way to overcome crises. We must focus on the most vulnerable segments. We must provide support for all countries of the world, for we will not be safe until everyone is safe.


“In April, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia joined forces with international organizations and global leaders to launch the Access to Covid-19 Tools-Accelerator. We co-led the Global Coronavirus Pledging Event to meet the global shortage in developing and distributing vaccines, therapeutics, and diagnostic tools, where the Kingdom contributed $500MN towards that end.


“With the advances we are witnessing in the Covid-19 vaccine development, our top priority is to ensure affordable and equitable access to the vaccines, therapeutics, and diagnostic tools for all.


“This pandemic is a true test for our global healthcare systems. Therefore, through the G20 Presidency, we utilized a number of vital initiatives to close the pandemic preparedness and response gaps.


“During our Presidency, with the support of the G20 members, we proposed  the Access to Pandemic Tools (APT) initiative, which aims at ensuring focus on sustainable preparedness and response to counter any future pandemic. We look forward to furthering this discussion and implementation during the Italian Presidency next year.


“Together we can reach our goal of protecting lives, livelihoods and shaping a better world to realize the opportunities for the 21st century for all.


“In this regard we would like to hear form their Majesties, Highnesses, Excellencies to share their relevant initiatives and best practices.


“Thank you”


The Presidency remains committed in its efforts to safeguarding the planet by preserving coral reefs, ocean ecosystems, and taking concrete actions to tackle land degradation and habitat loss. With a coordinated approach on environment, we ensure the G20 countries commitment to build a more inclusive, more sustainable, and more resilient future.


World leaders participated in the event including the, Prime Minister of Italy – Giuseppe Conte, Prime Minister of India – Narendra Modi, President of the People's Republic of China – Xi Jinping, Prime Minister of Japan – Yoshihide Suga, and Prime Minister of Australia- Scott Morrison, and President of the United States Donald Trump.


Prime Minister of Italy, Giuseppe Conte, said:


“The existential threat posed by climate change, land degradation and the decline of global biodiversity has already brought us to a crossroad, one that will determine whether we are able to Safeguard our Planet and a build a sustainable future. I am convinced the G20 can lead the world in the right direction.”


Prime Minister of Japan, Yoshihide Suga, said:


“Global environmental issues are urgent challenges that the international community should address. We, the G20 leaders, need to take the lead and work together as a team…for this great mission of ‘Safeguarding the Planet’, Japan will take the initiative while continuing further collaboration with other countries.”


Prime Minister of Australia- Scott Morrison, said:


“We need to Safeguard our Planet. This is an ongoing, long term collective responsibility…it is good that the G20 is in strong agreement about the importance of preserving our oceans and this is a very important issue for Australia...as G20 members we all have important responsibilities, to the present and also the future. We must all take action to Safeguard our Planet for our peoples and for the generations to come.”


President of the People's Republic of China – Xi Jinping, said:


“The G20 should continue to take the lead in tackling climate change…China supports deepening G20 coordination in reducing land degradation, conserving coral reefs, and cleaning up plastic from the ocean…let us work together for a clean and beautiful world.”


Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi, said:


“Climate change must be fought not in silo’s – but in an integrated, comprehensive and holistic way…This is the best time for further increasing research and innovation in new and sustainable technologies. We should do so with a spirit of cooperation and collaboration.”


President of the United States Donald Trump, said:


“We must preserve the majesty of God’s creation. Together, we can protect our environment, promote access to clean, affordable energy, and deliver a future of opportunity, prosperity, and hope for our nations all over the world.”


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