The G20 joint declaration, which was agreed by world leaders on the inaugural day of the G20 Summit, has welcomed India’s plan to build and maintain a Global Digital Public Infrastructure, a virtual repository of DPI which will be voluntarily shared by G20 members.
India had volunteered to the G20 nations to host a global repository of digital public infrastructure (DPI), Union Minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar said earlier this week.
“Welcome India’s plan to build and maintain a Global Digital Public Infrastructure Repository (GDPIR), a virtual repository of DPI, voluntarily shared by G20 members and beyond,” the G20 declaration stated.
Chandrasekhar said that there was a global consensus for the first time on the principles of DPIs, cybersecurity in digital economy and digital skills, within the G20 digital economy ministers’ working group.
What is Global Digital Public Infrastructure Repository?
The Global Digital Public Infrastructure Repository (GDPIR) will be a virtual repository of DPI and will be shared by G20 members.
According to the G20 statement, the repository aims to share the practices and experiences of development and deployment of DPI, which may include relevant tools and resources in different countries.
The Digital public infrastructure (DPI) is an evolving concept and refers to a collection of digital systems that are used by both the government and private businesses.
These systems are secure and strong, and they can be created using open standards and open-source software. It has the potential to provide large-scale services to society.
To simply understand, it refers to blocks or platforms such as digital identification, payment infrastructure and data exchange solutions that help countries deliver essential services to their people, empowering citizens and improving lives by enabling digital inclusion.
Some of the examples in India are identity system Aadhaar, payment platform UPI, Jan Dhan and others, which are receiving praises globally.
The joint declaration becomes significant as the G20 have provided a working definition for DPI for the first time and detailed principles and approaches that might be considered in its development and deployment.
According to Chandrasekhar, eight countries have signed MoUs with India for help in integrating and innovating on digital public infrastructure like Aadhaar, UPI, Digilocker and others. Digital tools like UPI has been widely adopted and India’s UPI transaction hit 9 billion worth Rs 14 lakh crore in May this year.
“The G20 nationals also discussed about financing the development of DPIs in the global south… Several multilateral organisations are interested in making sure that digitisations happens in the global south," the minister said.
Praises from the World Bank
The World Bank in a G20 policy document has said that without Digital Payment Infrastructure such as Jan Dhan Bank accounts, Aadhaar, and Mobile phones, India may have taken 47 years to achieve financial inclusion rate of 80% which the country has achieved in just six years.
India's leap in financial inclusion, powered by Digital Public Infrastructure! A G20 document prepared by the @WorldBank shared a very interest point on India's growth. India has achieved financial inclusion targets in just 6 years which would otherwise have taken at least 47…
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) September 8, 2023
“In just six years, it (the India stack) has achieved a remarkable 80% financial inclusion rate — a feat that would have taken nearly five decades without a DPI approach. Implementation of DPIs such as Aadhaar, along with the Jan Dhan bank accounts and mobile phones, is considered to have played a critical role in moving ownership of transaction accounts from approximately one-fourth of adults in 2008 to over 80 percent now,” the report stated.
The World Bank document has also recorded that the total value of UPI transactions last financial year was nearly 50% of India’s nominal GDP.
What Have G20 Declaration said on DPI
G20 New Delhi Leaders’ Declaration has laid emphasis on building safety, security, resilience and trust in the digital economy.
It has stressed on promoting international cooperation and further discussions on international governance for Artificial Intelligence and called for a secure, trusted, accountable and inclusive digital public infrastructure (DPI) for service delivery and innovation.
The joint declaration asserted that safe, secure, trusted, accountable and inclusive digital public infrastructure (DPI), respectful of human rights, personal data, privacy and intellectual property rights can foster resilience, and enable service delivery and innovation.