Saudi Arabia's King Salman bin Abzulaziz said on Sunday in his closing remarks at the G20 Riyadh Summit, that the G20 group had "adopted important policies that will achieve recovery all the way to an economy that is resilient, sustainable, inclusive, and balanced".
The virtual G20 summit was dominated by discussions of the coronavirus pandemic, its reprecussions and the need for joint action to contain the outbreak and ensure vaccines and treatments are made available for all.
The COVID-19 virus has infected over 57.7 million people and claimed the lives of more than 1.38 million. And tens of thousands more deaths are feared in the coming months, with the onset of cold weather and the holidays.
The G20 leaders said in their final declaration they will "spare no effort" to ensure the fair distribution of vaccines against the coronavirus worldwide, and support poor countries whose economies have been hit by the reprecussions of the COVID-19 pandemic.
After a virtual summit hosted by Saudi Arabia, the G20 leaders said in a closing statement: "We have mobilised resources to address the immediate financing needs in global health to support the research, development, manufacturing and distribution of safe and effective COVID-19 diagnostics, therapeutics and vaccines."
Find below the full transcript of King Salman bin Abdulaziz closing remarks:
“Your Majesties, Your Excellencies, Your Highnesses,
May peace be with you, I would like to thank you for your active participation over the last two days. We were able to reaffirm the spirit of cooperation that has always been the cornerstone of the G20 successes. This spirit is necessary today more than ever to face the impacts of this pandemic and to build a prosperous future for the people of the world.
We have achieved a lot this year. We have upheld our commitment to continue to work together to rise to the challenge of the COVID-19 pandemic in order to safeguard lives and livelihoods and protect the most vulnerable groups. We have adopted important policies that will achieve recovery all the way to an economy that is resilient, sustainable, inclusive, and balanced. These policies will also maintain the momentum to make the global trade system work for all, and create the conditions to achieve sustainable growth.
Most importantly, we have succeeded in sending out a message of hope and reassurance to our citizens and all people around the world through the Final Communique of this Leaders’ Summit. And it is my honor to announce that the G20 members have adopted this communique. This is what the world has been expecting from us. This achievement today is a culmination of our joint efforts throughout this challenge-fraught year.
Our joint and individual actions will be critical in overcoming the immediate global challenge we are facing. Looking forward, through Empowering People, Safeguarding the Planet, and Shaping New Frontiers, we will work on laying the foundations to achieve the main theme of our Presidency: Realizing Opportunities of the 21st Century for All.
Due to its unique stature regionally and internationally, and its unique location which interconnects three continents and lies at the intersection of emerging and developed markets, the Kingdom will continue to play a key role within the G20 to achieve global cooperation and find solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges of the 21st century, in collaboration with our partners in the G20 and other countries.
This was the first time that Saudi Arabia had the honor of holding the Presidency of the G20, and it turned out to be a very challenging year. Nevertheless, with your support, we managed to rise to the challenge together.
I would like to express my gratitude to our partners in the Troika, Japan and Italy, who helped us to achieve our program this year.
I have the pleasure to pass the honor and responsibility of the 2021 G20 Presidency to the Italian Republic, wishing them every success. We stand ready to provide support in any way possible.
I would like to thank all participants in this summit. It has been the honor of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to hold the G20 Presidency through this extraordinary year in human history.
May peace be with all of you.
I now adjourn the Riyadh G20 Summit.”