Group of Four (G-4) Countries | UPSC Notes

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Group of Four (G-4) Countries | UPSC Notes

• Brazil, Germany, India, and Japan make up the G-4. They all want to be permanent members of the UNSC.

• The G4 countries are helping each other get on the UNSC as a regular member.

• The G-4 countries usually meet on the grounds of the UN General Assembly’s high-level meeting each year.

• The main goal of the G4 is to get permanent member places on the Security Council. This is different from the G7, whose main focus is on the economy and long-term political goals. Since the UN was founded, each of these four countries has been chosen as a non-permanent member of the council.In the last few decades, their economic and political power has grown a lot, hitting a level similar to that of the five permanent members (P5).

• But the Uniting for Consensus movement and the G4’s business or political rivals often fight against the G4’s plans.

Uniting for Consensus (UfC), also known as the Coffee Club, is a movement that started in the 1990s to fight against a possible increase in the number of regular seats on the UN Security Council.

Under the leadership of Italy, it wants to counter the bids for permanent seats made by the G4 nations (Brazil, Germany, India, and Japan) and is asking for a consensus before any decision is made about the shape and size of the Security Council.

Why is there a Need for UNSC Reforms?

• The UN stands for a bigger world, and it’s funny that its most important group has only 5 permanent members.

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• The Security Council is made up of people who were in power after World War II, so it isn’t keeping up with how the balance of power in the world is changing.

• When the UNSC was made, big powers were given special rights to make them members of the council. This was important for the organisation to work well and to avoid failing like the “League of Nations.” • Areas like East Asia, South America, and Africa don’t have any permanent members on the council.

Why is India Demanding the Permanent Membership of the UNSC?


While the UN Security Council has been around for 40 years, India has never asked to be a regular member.

• When India sent a written proposal to the UN in 1993 in reaction to a resolution from the General Assembly about reforms, it didn’t say that it wanted permanent membership.

• India has only been asking to be a permanent part of the council in the last few years.

• India should have a fixed seat on the council because it has the biggest economy, the most people, and is the biggest democracy in the world.

India has become one of the most important countries in Asia and the world as a whole.

If India were a permanent part of the Security Council, it would be a more representative group.


• If you have the power to reject, you can have a lot of power.

India has been trying since 2009 to put Masood Azhar on the list of world terrorists. China kept putting it off with its veto power.

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• India will be better able to work for its own needs.

There was a time when the USSR started to stay away from the UNSC, and that was when the US was able to get the Korean War resolution passed. From then on, the USSR knew it didn’t make sense to stop going to the UN. It needs to keep the right to veto any motion that goes against them.

• If India becomes a permanent member, it will be seen as a sign of its rise as a global power that is ready to play a key part in the council’s goals of peace and security around the world.

• India will have the ‘prestige’ that comes with being a regular member of the council.

Way Forward

• The order of power around the world is changing, and the P5 needs to realise that it’s time to start reforming the UNSC. The powers that are losing power should either give up their seats on the UNSC or make it bigger, so that new powers can join.

• Other changes might work faster than the P5 extension. None of the so-called powerful countries want to share their pie with another country.

• India needs to work on getting stronger economically, militarily, and diplomatically if it wants to take part in big conversations and groups. Slowly, the UNSC will decide that India is ready to be a part of it.

United Nations Security Council (UNSC): The UNSC is one of the six main bodies of the UN, and it is in charge of keeping peace and security around the world.

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It can set up peacekeeping operations, make international sanctions, and give permission for military action through decisions from the Security Council.

It is the only UN body with the power to make decisions that member states have to follow.

There are fifteen people on the Security Council. The five permanent members of the group are Russia, the United Kingdom, France, China, and the United States.

These fixed members can put a stop to any important Security Council decision, like letting new countries join or choosing a new Secretary-General.

There are also 10 members of the Security Council who are not permanent. These members are chosen by area and serve two-year terms. The head of the group changes hands every month among its members.