The twin crises of the pandemic and an uneven, uncertain global recovery dominated the first day of a two-day summit under the chairmanship of Saudi Arabia, which hands off the rotating presidency of the G20 to Italy next month.
Keen to be better prepared for any potential next pandemic that might come, G20 leaders also said they would commit "to advancing global pandemic preparedness, prevention, detection, and response" and "to the continued sharing of timely, transparent, and standardised data and information".
US President Donald Trump will participate in the virtual Group of 20 summit being hosted by Saudi Arabia on Saturday, a senior US official said. Coordinated efforts by the largest economies of the world will surely lead to faster recovery from this pandemic.
"We will spare no effort to ensure their affordable and equitable access for all people, consistent with members' commitments to incentivize innovation", the leaders said in the draft G20 statement, seen by Reuters.
Saudi Arabia hosted the G20 over video conference amid the COVID-19 pandemic in Riyadh Saudi Arabia
"We have a duty to rise to the challenge together during this summit and give a strong message of hope and reassurance to our people by adopting policies to mitigate this crisis", he told world leaders in opening remarks.
Speaking at Sunday's meeting, Xi said G20 countries must prioritize development to end global poverty and provide debt relief for developing countries.
As the trailblazing event got under way, there had been some early quirks, with someone heard telling King Salman that "the whole world is watching" before the event started and Xi apparently having to call for technical help.
The unusual format, in place of a real-life meeting that coronavirus restrictions made impossible, has produced some awkward interactions, and deprived the host nation Saudi Arabia of an opportunity to showcase itself on the worldwide stage.More news: Ducati SuperSport 950 breaks cover
The group also struck a unified tone on supporting multilateral trade and the fight against climate change, but the closing document lacks details on numerous issues dominating the virtual summit.
He hoped that the meeting will set goals and take actions to ensure the protection of global biodiversity in the years ahead. He then went golfing.
The COVID-19 pandemic, which has thrown the global economy into a deep recession this year, and efforts needed to underpin an economic rebound in 2021, were at the top of the agenda.
But G20 leaders face mounting pressure to help stave off possible credit defaults across developing nations.More news: Ethiopia army threatens 'no mercy' in assault on regional capital
The leaders also recognised the specific challenges faced by countries in Africa and small island developing states, reflecting growing recognition that even some middle-income countries may need debt relief as a result of the pandemic.
The family of Loujain al-Hathloul, a jailed Saudi women's rights defender believed by her relatives and advocacy organizations to be on hunger strike, has called on the G20 to demand that Saudi Arabia release the prominent activist.
The President later departed for a Virginia golf course, skipping the session on COVID-19 vaccines.
"Investors are not journalists, investors are looking for countries where they can place their trust in an effective government that has proper economic decision-making", Falih answered.More news: Government exploring modalities of emergency authorisation of Covid-19 vaccine