As the G20 intergovernmental forum meets next week in Bali to tackle major issues related to the global economy, the president of the Indonesian Chamber of Commerce stresses that the B20 and R20 taking place on the sidelines will make a valuable contribution to 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 (G20) summit in Bali, which includes 19 countries and the European Union.
As world leaders gather to discuss key issues related to the global economy, such as international financial stability, climate change mitigation and sustainable development, the Business 20 (B20) and Religion Forum (R20) will make a relevant contribution to stimulating economic growth and promoting solidarity and respect between the various peoples, cultures and religions of the world.
In particular, the R20 aims to help ensure that religion in the 21st century functions as an authentic and dynamic source of solutions, rather than as a division. Its main objectives are to prevent the “militarization” of identity; curbing the spread of communal hatred; promote solidarity and respect and foster the emergence of a just and harmonious world order, based on the equal rights and dignity of every human being.
Politics and prosperity
Arsjad Rasjid, president 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 social tensions. potential.
Among the reasons for all this are the ongoing war in Ukraine and the Covid-19 pandemic which has affected so many vital aspects of human life, from economic to environmental to political.
This is why, he said, alongside the G20, the B20 and R20 are so crucial at this time.
“We can’t just think about politics, we have to focus on the economy, on how to create the conditions for prosperity for all,” he said, stressing the importance of fostering economic development “with values”.
“That’s why religious interfaith discussion is very important,” he said.
Unity in diversity
Indonesia is a Muslim-majority country, and Mr Rasjid believes it can do a lot 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 each other, especially at this crucial time in the world.
“We need a new world order, especially after the pandemic,” he said, noting that Covid-19 affects everyone, regardless of political or religious affiliation.
“It’s like God reminding all of us humans that we have to work together,” he said.
United for the future
On the issue of climate change, Mr Rasjid said it is crucial: “We all live together in this world, and there is no climate divide.”
The climate, he said, is “not like countries with borders; the climate is borderless. And for us to fix the climate, we have to be united. We must work together. It belongs to everyone. »
Caring for the planet, he said, means caring for people’s lives and looking after the next generation.
“I believe that God created the earth for us, […] and it is up to us to ensure that we take care of the earth, especially the climate,” he said.
A global conversation
Regarding the presence of specific heads of state, Mr. Rasjid said he did not think it was important whether the Russian president was present or not, but rather: “what is important are the conversations” which must take place.
Leaders and delegates, he said, must not just think about politics and egos, but about the people.
“At the end of the day, it’s about people,” he explained, emphasizing the need for a conversation in which all parties and all sides participate.
Even when it comes to the war in Ukraine, “it’s a conversation we should have, all of us together,” he continued, noting that “it’s a global conversation because Russia and the United States cannot solve it alone”.
Values and policy
Finally, Mr. Rasjid explained the importance of injecting into political discussions spiritual values and the strength of inter-religious 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 in order that there are no more poor, it would be the key factor of any economic development.
Thus, he concluded, interreligious dialogue must be part of the conversation at all levels so that a new post-pandemic world order can be established.