G20: Key European takeaways from Bali summit so far

France's President Emmanuel Macron reacts during a conversation ahead of a working lunch at the G20 Summit in Nusa Dua, Bali, Indonesia Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2022.
France's President Emmanuel Macron reacts during a conversation ahead of a working lunch at the G20 Summit in Nusa Dua, Bali, Indonesia Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2022. Copyright AP Photo
By Euronews with AP, Reuters, AFP
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From high level meetings to new regional strategies, here's the latest news from the G20 summit in Bali.


The G20 group of the world's biggest economies is meeting in Bali this week, and European countries are represented by France, Germany, Italy, the European Union, the UK, Turkey, and Russia. 

So what are some of the key things we've learned so far? 

1. Most G20 members condemn Russia's invasion of Ukraine

A draft of a declaration by leaders of G20 countries said "most" members strongly condemned the war in Ukraine. 

The countries involved stressed it was "causing immense human suffering and exacerbating existing fragilities in the global economy," the draft said, suggesting that Russia had opposed the language.

The G20 members also voiced deep concern over the challenges posed to global food security by escalating tensions and called for the need for central bank independence to ensure they keep up efforts to rein in soaring inflation, the draft showed.

The 16-page document has yet to be adopted by G20 members.

In the first session of the Indonesia-hosted summit held on Tuesday, many countries condemned Russia's invasion of Ukraine, and afterwards, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov left Bali. 

2. China is trying to mend diplomatic fences

Beijing is using the G20 summit to try and mend some diplomatic fences in Bali, even amid concern in the EU about China's economic clout and issues like Chinese ownership of key EU infrastructure.   

French President Emmanuel Macron held a bilateral meeting Tuesday with Chinese President Xi Jinping on the sidelines of the G-20 summit on Tuesday. 

Willy Kurniawan/AP
Chinese President Xi Jinping and his wife Peng Liyuan walk at the Welcoming Dinner during G20 Leaders' Summit in Bali, 15 November 2022Willy Kurniawan/AP

Meanwhile, Xi also met with new Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, signalling that they would seek to move past years of disagreements after the first formal meeting between leaders of the two countries since 2016.

Macron asked Xi to intervene with their Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin to convince him to stop the "escalation" in Ukraine and return to the "negotiating table", said the Elysée.

The two leaders also expressed their desire to "move forward" on several bilateral issues, from agrifood to aeronautics, and Macron said he wanted to visit China early in 2023 if COVID-19 conditions allow. 

On Monday, Xi met with US President Joe Biden to help ease tensions in their bilateral relationship. 

3. European leaders make it personal with Putin

European leaders have been using their G20 speeches to hit out at Russia and make it personal with Putin -- even as the Russian delegation was sitting in the same room. 

Britain's new Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said: "I'm going to use this opportunity to condemn Russia's hostile and illegal war in Ukraine unequivocally. And I know that other allies will as well because it's right that we highlight what is going on and hold Russia to account for that.

"I won't shy away from doing that," said Sunak. 

Sergei Bobylev/Sputnik
Russian President Vladimir Putin delivers his speech at a ceremony to mark the 75th anniversary of Russian Federal Medical-Biological Agency in Moscow, 9 November 2022Sergei Bobylev/Sputnik

Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelenskyy gave a video address to the summit and made a point of snubbing Russia by addressing them as the "G19". Russian President Vladimir Putin did not attend the Bali event. 

Zelenskyy reiterated 10 conditions for ending the conflict that began in February, among them a complete withdrawal of Russian troops and full restoration of Ukrainian control of its territory.


He also called for an international conference to "cement the key elements of the post-war security architecture in the Euro-Atlantic space, including guarantees for Ukraine."

4. France is using Bali G20 summit to launch new Indo-Pacific strategy

French President Emmanuel Macron is using the G20 summit to relaunch France's strategic ambitions in the Asia-Pacific region. 

He is meeting with regional heavyweights, including Chinese President Xi Jinping and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, on the sidelines of the Bali summit. 

Above all, he hopes for "recognition" of France's ambitions and influence at the summit of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Forum (APEC), Thursday and Friday in Bangkok, where it will be the first European country invited.

The challenges are numerous: from the size of the area in which France is trying to project itself, more than 10,000 kilometres from Europe, to the difficulties of deploying military assets so far from home, in particular. 


Emmanuel Macron has made this vast area stretching from the East African coasts to the West American coasts a strategic priority, where France has many territories and maritime areas.

This vast maritime space means France has a vested interest in environmental and fisheries issues, as well as the fight against ocean-related trafficking.

France is also increasingly present militarily, favouring growing cooperation with neighbouring countries.

It is increasing joint exercises with India and Japan and patrols in the China Sea. 

5. EU leaders took the opportunity to talk in Balin

European Union leaders met Tuesday on the sidelines of the G-20 summit in Bali.


French President Emmanuel Macron sat down with, amongst others, German Chancellor Olaf Scholtz and Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte alongside top EU officials Ursula von der Leyen and Charles Michel.

AP Photo/Dita Alangkara
European Council President Charles Michel during the G20 leaders summit in Nusa Dua, Bali, 15 November 2022AP Photo/Dita Alangkara

Talks at the G20 summit were beginning under the hopeful theme of "recover together, recover stronger" after the COVID-19 pandemic and its economic consequences.

G20 members include both industrialised and developing nations and account for 80% of the world's economic activity and two-thirds of the world's population.

The summit's official focus is financial stability, health, sustainable energy and digital transformation, but tensions over Russia's invasion of Ukraine have complicated host Indonesia's efforts to build consensus to tackle those topics.

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