Print Friendly, PDF & Email

G4 seeks time-bound reform of Security Council

Topics Covered: Important International institutions, agencies and fora, their structure, mandate.

G4 seeks time-bound reform of Security Council:

Who are G4 Nations?

The G4 nations comprising Brazil, Germany, India, and Japan are four countries which support each other’s bids for permanent seats on the United Nations Security Council.

 Basis for these demands:

  • Each of these four countries have figured among the elected non-permanent members of the council since the UN’s establishment.
  • Their economic and political influence has grown significantly in the last decades, reaching a scope comparable to the permanent members (P5).


  • The United Kingdom and France have backed the G4’s bid for permanent seats on the United Nations Security Council.
  • Japan has received support from the United States and the United Kingdom.
  • All the permanent members of P5 have supported India’s bids for permanent seat on the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) but China had previously implied that it is only ready to support India’s bid for a permanent seat on United Nations Security Council if India did not associate its bid with Japan.
  • Brazil has received backing from three of the current permanent members, namely France, Russia, and the United Kingdom.


  • There has been discontent among the present permanent members regarding the inclusion of controversial nations or countries not supported by them.
  • For instance, Japan’s bid is heavily opposed by China, Russia and South Korea who think that Japan still needs to make additional atonement for war crimes committed during World War II.
  • Under the leadership of Italy, countries that strongly oppose the G4 countries’ bids have formed the Uniting for Consensus movement, or the Coffee Club, composed mainly of regional powers that oppose the rise of some nearby country to permanent member status.

Why in News now?

The foreign ministers of the G4 countries held a virtual meeting coinciding with the 75th session of the UN General Assembly during which they held extensive discussion on the need for urgent reform of the UNSC.

  • They expressed their concern over lack of any “meaningful” forward movement on long-pending reform of Council and demanded “urgency” on the issue.

What are their demands?

  1. Permanent seats should be given in the council for these countries.
  2. There is a clear need for an enhanced role of developing countries and of major contributors to the United Nations to make the Council more legitimate, effective and representative.
  3. Africa needs to be represented in both the permanent and non-permanent categories to correct the historical injustice against this continent with regard to its under-representation.
  4. Need for text-based negotiations within a fixed time frame for the UNSC reform.


Present structure of the UNSC:

At present, the UNSC comprises five permanent members and 10 non-permanent member countries which are elected for a two-year term by the General Assembly of the UN.

  • The five permanent members are Russia, the UK, China, France and the United States.
  • These countries can veto any substantive resolution.


Prelims Link:

  1. Name the permanent members of UNSC?
  2. How are non permanent members elected?
  3. Voting powers at UNSC.
  4. How are non permanent seats distributed?
  5. UNGA vs UNSC.
  6. What is G4 group?

Mains Link:

Discuss why India should be given a permanent seat at the UNSC.

Sources: the Hindu.