AFRICAN UNION (Syllabus: GS Paper 2 – IR)

News-CRUX-10     11th September 2023        

Context: The African Union (AU) was recently admitted as a new member of the G20 after India floated the idea of including the organisation. The development took place at the recent 18th G20 Heads of State and Government Summit in New Delhi.

African Union (AU)

  • About: The AU is an intergovernmental organisation of the 55 member states located on the continent of Africa.
  • Established: In 2002 as the successor of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU), which was formed in 1963.

o Main objective of OAU: To help liberate the colonised countries on the continent. 

  • Aim: The AU seeks to build “an Integrated, Prosperous and Peaceful Africa, driven by its own citizens”.

o Unlike the OAU, the AU concentrates its energy and resources on achieving greater unity and solidarity between African countries and their people.

o It seeks to accelerate the process of the political and socio-economic integration of the continent.

  • Secretariat: Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.


  • Origin: Formed in 1999 in the backdrop of the financial crisis of the late 1990s that hit East Asia and Southeast Asia in particular.
  • Aim and objective:  To secure global financial stability by involving middle-income countries.
  • Members: Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Republic of Korea, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Turkey, the United Kingdom, the United States and the EU.
  • Presidency: Rotates every year among members, and the country holding the presidency, together with the previous and next presidency-holder, forms the ‘Troika’ to ensure continuity of the G20 agenda.
  • No permanent secretariat: The incumbent chair establishes a temporary secretariat for the duration of its term.
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