Group of Seven

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Group of Seven and the European Union


Prime Minister Justin Trudeau

 France (2019 host)

President Emmanuel Macron


Chancellor Angela Merkel


Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte


Prime Minister Shinzō Abe

 United Kingdom

Prime Minister Boris Johnson

 United States

President Donald Trump

 European Union

Council President Donald Tusk
Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker

The Group of Seven (G7) is a group consisting of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States. These countries, with the seven largest IMF-described advanced economies in the world,[1] represent 58% of the global net wealth ($317 trillion).[2] The G7 countries also represent more than 46% of the global gross domestic product (GDP) based on nominal values, and more than 32% of the global GDP based on purchasing power parity.[3] The European Union is also represented at the G7 summit.


G7 leaders during the 2014 emergency meeting about the Russian annexation of Crimea, hosted by the Netherlands

The concept of a forum for the world's major industrialized countries emerged before the 1973 oil crisis. On Sunday, 25 March 1973, the U.S. Secretary of the Treasury, George Shultz, convened an informal gathering of finance ministers from West Germany Helmut Schmidt, France Valéry Giscard d'Estaing, and the United Kingdom Anthony Barber before an upcoming meeting in Washington, D.C. When running the idea past President Nixon, he noted that he would be out of town and offered use of the White House. The meeting was subsequently held in the library on the ground floor.[4] Taking their name from the setting, this original group of four became known as the "Library Group".[5] In mid-1973, at the World Bank-IMF meetings, Shultz proposed the addition of Japan to the original four nations, who agreed.[4] The informal gathering of senior financial officials from the United States, the United Kingdom, West Germany, Japan, and France became known as the "Group of Five".[6]

Then, in 1974, President Pompidou of France died and his immediate successor refused to run in the special election, making three changes of heads of state in France in one year. Chancellor Brandt of West Germany was forced to resign in a scandal, and his successor lasted only nine days making three changes in West Germany as well. Plus Then President Nixon of the United States and Prime Minister Tanaka of Japan were forced to resign in disgrace. Queen Elizabeth II was forced to broker a deal to form a government after a hung election, which was so unstable that another election the same year had to take place, and finally, the traditionally unstable government of the 1st Italian Republic changed Prime Ministers yet again. The new American President Gerald Ford, asked some other new heads of state/government to hold a retreat the following year to get to know one another.

So, in 1975, a summit hosted by France brought together representatives of six governments: France, West Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Schmidt and Giscard d'Estaing were heads of government in their respective countries, and since they both spoke fluent English, it occurred to them that they, and British Prime Minister Harold Wilson and U.S. President Gerald Ford could get together in an informal retreat and discuss election results and the issues of the day. In late spring, d'Estaing of France invited the heads of government from West Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States to a summit in Château de Rambouillet;[7] the annual meeting of the six leaders was organized under a rotating presidency, forming the Group of Six (G6). In 1976, with Wilson out as prime minister of Britain, Schmidt and Gerald Ford felt an English speaker with more experience was needed, so Pierre Trudeau, the Prime Minister of Canada, the next largest advanced economy after the first six, was invited to join the group[8] and the group became the Group of Seven (G7).[7] Since first invited by the United Kingdom in 1977, the European Union has been represented by the president of the European Commission and the leader of the country that holds the presidency of the Council of the European Union;[9] the Council President now also regularly attends.

Until the 1985 Plaza Accord no one outside a tight official circle knew when the seven finance ministers met or what they agreed upon. The summit was announced the day before and a communiqué was issued afterwards.[10]

Following 1994's G7 summit in Naples, Russian officials held separate meetings with leaders of the G7 after the group's summits. This informal arrangement was dubbed the Political 8 (P8) – or, colloquially, the G7+1. At the invitation of Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Tony Blair and President of the United States Bill Clinton,[11] Russian President Boris Yeltsin was invited first as a guest observer, later as a full participant. After the 1997 meeting Russia was formally invited to the next meeting and formally joined the group in 1998, resulting in a new governmental political forum, the Group of Eight or G8.[7] The Russian Federation, in fact, had and has limited net national wealth and financial weight compared to the other members of the G8. Russia also has never been a major advanced economy according to the IMF.[12][13] However, the Russian Federation was ejected from the G8 political forum in March 2014 following the Russian annexation of Crimea.[14]

Early function

The organization was founded to facilitate shared macroeconomic initiatives by its members in response to the collapse of the exchange rate 1971, during the time of the Nixon shock, the 1970s energy crisis and the ensuing recession.[15]


Host venues of G7 summits in North America
Host venues of G7 summits in Europe
Host venues of G7 summits in Japan

Since 1975, the group meets annually on summit site to discuss economic policies; since 1987, the G7 Finance Ministers have met at least semi-annually, up to four times a year at stand-alone meetings.[16]

In 1996, the G7 launched an initiative for the 42 heavily indebted poor countries (HIPC).[17]

In 1997, the G7 provided $300 million to the effort to build the containment of the reactor meltdown at Chernobyl.[18]

In 1999, the G7 decided to get more directly involved in "managing the international monetary system" through the Financial Stability Forum, formed earlier in 1999 and the G-20, established following the summit, to "promote dialogue between major industrial and emerging market countries".[19] The G7 also announced their plan to cancel 90% of bilateral, and multilateral debt for the HIPC, totaling $100 billion. In 2005 the G7 announced debt reductions of "up to 100%" to be negotiated on a "case by case" basis.[20]

In 2008 the G7 met twice in Washington, D.C. to discuss the global financial crisis of 2007–2008[21] and in February 2009 in Rome.[22][23] The group of finance ministers pledged to take "all necessary steps" to stem the crisis.[24]

On 2 March 2014, the G7 condemned the "Russian Federation's violation of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine."[25] The G7 stated "that the International Monetary Fund (IMF) remains the institution best prepared to help Ukraine address its immediate economic challenges through policy advice and financing, conditioned on needed reforms", and that the G7 was "committed to mobilize rapid technical assistance to support Ukraine in addressing its macroeconomic, regulatory and anti-corruption challenges."[25] On 24 March 2014, the G7 convened an emergency meeting in response to the Russian Federation's annexation of Crimea at the official residence of the Prime Minister of the Netherlands, the Catshuis in The Hague. This location was chosen because all G7 leaders were already present to attend the 2014 Nuclear Security Summit hosted by the Netherlands. This was the first G7 meeting neither taking place in a member nation nor having the host leader participating in the meeting.[26] On 4 June 2014 leaders at the G7 summit in Brussels, condemned Moscow for its "continuing violation" of Ukraine's sovereignty, in their joint statement and stated they were prepared to impose further sanctions on Russia.[27] This meeting was the first since Russia was expelled from the G8 following its annexation of Crimea in March.[27]

The annual G7 leaders summit is attended by the heads of government.[28] The member country holding the G7 presidency is responsible for organizing and hosting the year's summit. The serial annual summits can be parsed chronologically in arguably distinct ways, including as the sequence of host countries for the summits has recurred over time and series.[29] Generally every country hosts the summit once every 7 years.[30]

List of summits

Date Host Host figure Location held Website Notes
1st 15–17 November 1975  France Valéry Giscard d'Estaing Château de Rambouillet, District of the Paris Region G6 Summit
2nd 27–28 June 1976  United States Gerald R. Ford Dorado, Puerto Rico[31] Also called "Rambouillet II". Canada joined the group, forming the G7[31]
3rd 7–8 May 1977  United Kingdom James Callaghan London, England The President of the European Commission was invited to join the annual G7 summits
4th 16–17 July 1978  West Germany Helmut Schmidt Bonn, North Rhine-Westphalia
5th 28–29 June 1979  Japan Masayoshi Ōhira Tokyo
6th 22–23 June 1980  Italy Francesco Cossiga Venice, Veneto Prime Minister Ōhira died in office on 12 June; Foreign Minister Saburō Ōkita led the delegation that represented Japan.
7th 20–21 July 1981  Canada Pierre E. Trudeau Montebello, Quebec
8th 4–6 June 1982  France François Mitterrand Versailles, Île-de-France
9th 28–30 May 1983  United States Ronald Reagan Williamsburg, Virginia
10th 7–9 June 1984  United Kingdom Margaret Thatcher London, England
11th 2–4 May 1985  West Germany Helmut Kohl Bonn, North Rhine-Westphalia
12th 4–6 May 1986  Japan Yasuhiro Nakasone Tokyo
13th 8–10 June 1987  Italy Amintore Fanfani Venice, Veneto
14th 19–21 June 1988  Canada Brian Mulroney Toronto, Ontario
15th 14–16 July 1989  France François Mitterrand Paris, Île-de-France
16th 9–11 July 1990  United States George H. W. Bush Houston, Texas
17th 15–17 July 1991  United Kingdom John Major London, England
18th 6–8 July 1992  Germany Helmut Kohl Munich, Bavaria
19th 7–9 July 1993  Japan Kiichi Miyazawa Tokyo
20th 8–10 July 1994  Italy Silvio Berlusconi Naples, Campania
21st 15–17 June 1995  Canada Jean Chrétien Halifax, Nova Scotia [32]
22nd 27–29 June 1996  France Jacques Chirac Lyon, Rhône-Alpes International organizations' debut to G7 Summits periodically. The invited ones here were: United Nations, World Bank, International Monetary Fund and the World Trade Organization.[33]
23rd 20–22 June 1997  United States Bill Clinton Denver, Colorado [34] Russia joins the group, forming G8
24th 15–17 May 1998  United Kingdom Tony Blair Birmingham, West Midlands [35]
25th 18–20 June 1999  Germany Gerhard Schröder Cologne, North Rhine-Westphalia [36] First Summit of the G-20 major economies at Berlin
26th 21–23 July 2000  Japan Yoshirō Mori Nago, Okinawa [37] Formation of the G8+5 starts, when South Africa was invited. Until the 38th G8 summit in 2012, it has been invited to the Summit annually without interruption. Also, with permission from a G8 leader, other nations were invited to the Summit on a periodical basis for the first time. Nigeria, Algeria and Senegal accepted their invitations here. The World Health Organization was also invited for the first time.[33]
27th 21–22 July 2001  Italy Silvio Berlusconi Genoa, Liguria [38] Leaders from Bangladesh, Mali and El Salvador accepted their invitations here.[33] Demonstrator Carlo Giuliani is shot and killed by the Carabinieri during a violent demonstration. One of the largest and most violent anti-globalization movement protests occurred for the 27th G8 summit.[39] Following those events and the September 11 attacks two months later in 2001, the G8 have met at more remote locations.
28th 26–27 June 2002  Canada Jean Chrétien Kananaskis, Alberta [40] Russia gains permission to officially host a G8 Summit.
29th 1–3 June 2003  France Jacques Chirac Évian-les-Bains, Rhône-Alpes The G8+5 was unofficially made, when China, India, Brazil, and Mexico were invited to this Summit for the first time. South Africa has joined the G8 Summit, since 2000, until the 2012 edition. Other first-time nations that were invited by the French president included: Egypt, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, Malaysia and Switzerland.[33]
30th 8–10 June 2004  United States George W. Bush Sea Island, Georgia [41] A record number of leaders from 12 different nations accepted their invitations here. Amongst a couple of veteran nations, the others were: Ghana, Afghanistan, Bahrain, Iraq, Jordan, Turkey, Yemen and Uganda.[33] Also, the state funeral of former President Ronald Reagan took place in Washington during the summit. All of G8 participants attended this funeral, along with 20 more heads of state.
31st 6–8 July 2005  United Kingdom Tony Blair Gleneagles, Scotland [42] The G8+5 was officially formed. On the second day of the meeting, suicide bombers killed 52 people on the London Underground and a bus. Nations that were invited for the first time were Ethiopia and Tanzania. The African Union and the International Energy Agency made their debut here.[33] During the 31st G8 summit in United Kingdom, 225,000 people took to the streets of Edinburgh as part of the Make Poverty History campaign calling for Trade Justice, Debt Relief and Better Aid. Numerous other demonstrations also took place challenging the legitimacy of the G8.[43]
32nd 15–17 July 2006  Russia (only G8 member, not G7)[12] Vladimir Putin Strelna, Saint Petersburg First G8 Summit on Russian Federation soil. Also, the International Atomic Energy Agency and UNESCO made their debut here.[33]
33rd 6–8 June 2007  Germany Angela Merkel Heiligendamm, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Seven different international organizations accepted their invitations to this Summit. The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development and the Commonwealth of Independent States made their debut here.[33]
34th 7–9 July 2008  Japan Yasuo Fukuda Tōyako, Hokkaidō [44] Nations that accepted their G8 Summit invitations for the first time are: Australia, Indonesia and South Korea.[33]
35th 8–10 July 2009  Italy Silvio Berlusconi La Maddalena, Sardinia (cancelled)
L'Aquila, Abruzzo (re-located)[45]
[46] This G8 Summit was originally planned to be in La Maddalena (Sardinia), but was moved to L'Aquila as a way of showing Prime Minister Berlusconi's desire to help the region after the 2009 L'Aquila earthquake. Nations that accepted their invitations for the first time were: Angola, Denmark, Netherlands and Spain.[47] A record of ten international organizations were represented in this G8 Summit. For the first time, the Food and Agriculture Organization, the International Fund for Agricultural Development, the World Food Programme, and the International Labour Organization accepted their invitations.[48]
36th 25–26 June 2010[49]  Canada Stephen Harper Huntsville, Ontario[50] [51] Malawi, Colombia, Haiti, and Jamaica accepted their invitations for the first time.[52]
37th 26–27 May 2011  France Nicolas Sarkozy Deauville,[53][54] Lower Normandy Guinea, Niger, Côte d'Ivoire and Tunisia accepted their invitations for the first time. Also, the League of Arab States made its debut to the meeting.[55]
38th 18–19 May 2012  United States Barack Obama Chicago, Illinois (cancelled)
Camp David, Maryland (re-located)[56]
The summit was originally planned for Chicago, along with the NATO summit, but it was announced officially on 5 March 2012, that the G8 summit will be held at the more private location of Camp David and at one day earlier than previously scheduled.[57] Also, this is the second G8 summit, in which one of the leaders, Vladimir Putin, declined to participate. This G8 summit concentrated on the core leaders only; no non-G8 leaders or international organizations were invited.
39th 17–18 June 2013  United Kingdom David Cameron Lough Erne, County Fermanagh[58] [59] As in 2012, only the core members of the G8 attended this meeting. The four main topics that were discussed here were trade, government transparency, tackling tax evasion, and the ongoing Syrian crisis.[60]
40th 4–5 June 2014  European Union Herman Van Rompuy
José Manuel Barroso
Brussels, Belgium (re-located from Sochi, Russia) G7 summit as an alternative meeting without Russia in 2014 due to association with Crimean crisis.[61] The 2014 G8 summit in Sochi was cancelled and re-located to Brussels, Belgium without Russia.[62] Emergency meeting in March 2014 in The Hague.
41st 7–8 June 2015  Germany Angela Merkel Schloss Elmau, Bavaria[63] [1] Summit dedicated to focus on the global economy as well as on key issues regarding foreign, security and development policy.[64] The Global Apollo Programme was also on the agenda.[65]
42nd 26–27 May 2016[66][67]  Japan Shinzō Abe Shima, Mie Prefecture[68] [2] The G7 leaders aim to address challenges affecting the growth of the world economy, like slowdowns in emerging markets and drops in price of oil. The G7 also issued a warning on the United Kingdom that "a UK exit from the EU would reverse the trend towards greater global trade and investment, and the jobs they create and is a further serious risk to growth".[69] Commitment to an EU–Japan Free Trade Agreement.
43rd 26–27 May 2017[70]  Italy Paolo Gentiloni Taormina, Sicily[71] [3] G7 leaders emphasized common endeavours: to end the Syrian crisis, to fulfill the UN mission in Libya and reducing the presence of ISIS, ISIL and Da'esh in Syria and Iraq. North Korea was urged to comply with UN resolutions, Russian responsibility was stressed for Ukrainian conflict. Supporting economic activity and ensuring price stability was demanded while inequalities in trade and gender were called to be challenged. It was agreed to help countries in creating conditions that address the drivers of migration: ending hunger, increasing competitiveness and advancing global health security.[72]
44th 8–9 June 2018  Canada[73] Justin Trudeau La Malbaie, Quebec It took place at the Manoir Richelieu. Prime Minister Trudeau announced five themes for Canada's G7 presidency which began in January 2018. Climate, along with commerce trades, was one of the main themes. “Working together on climate change, oceans and clean energy[74] The G7 members' final statement contains 28 points. US President Donald Trump didn't agree to the economic section of the final statement.[75] The G7 members also announced to recall sanctions and to be ready to take further restrictive measures against Russian Federation for the failure of Minsk Agreement's complete implementation.[76]
45th 24–26 August 2019  France[77] Emmanuel Macron Biarritz, Nouvelle-Aquitaine [4]
46th TBD, 2020  United States[77] Donald Trump TBD
candidate: Trump National Doral, Miami, Florida[78][79]
47th TBD, 2021  United Kingdom[80] Boris Johnson TBD


Member Representative(s) Minister of Finance Central Bank Governor
Canada Prime Minister Justin Trudeau Minister of Finance Bill Morneau Stephen Poloz
France President Emmanuel Macron Minister of the Economy Bruno Le Maire François Villeroy de Galhau
Germany Chancellor Angela Merkel Minister of Finance Olaf Scholz Jens Weidmann
Italy Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte Minister of Economy
and Finance
Giovanni Tria Ignazio Visco
Japan Prime Minister Shinzō Abe Minister of Finance Tarō Asō Haruhiko Kuroda
United Kingdom Prime Minister Boris Johnson Chancellor of the Exchequer Sajid Javid Mark Carney
United States President Donald Trump Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin Jerome Powell
European Union Council President[81] Donald Tusk Commissioner for Economic
and Monetary Affairs
and the Euro
Valdis Dombrovskis Mario Draghi
Commission President[81] Jean-Claude Juncker

Country leaders and EU representatives, as of 2019

Member country data

Member Trade mil. USD (2014) Nom. GDP mil. USD (2014)[82] PPP GDP mil. USD (2014)[82] Nom. GDP per capita USD (2014)[82] PPP GDP per capita USD (2014)[82] HDI (2017) Population (2014) Permanent members of UN Security Council DAC OECD Economic classification (IMF)[83]
Canada 947,200 1,785,387 1,595,975 50,304 44,967 0.926 35,467,000 Red XN Green tickY Green tickY Advanced
France 1,212,300 2,833,687 2,591,170 44,332 40,538 0.901 63,951,000 Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Advanced
Germany 2,866,600 3,874,437 3,748,094 47,774 46,216 0.936 80,940,000 Red XN Green tickY Green tickY Advanced
Italy 948,600 2,167,744 2,135,359 35,335 35,131 0.880 60,665,551 Red XN Green tickY Green tickY Advanced
Japan 1,522,400 4,602,367 4,767,157 36,222 37,519 0.909 127,061,000 Red XN Green tickY Green tickY Advanced
United Kingdom 1,189,400 2,950,039 2,569,218 45,729 39,826 0.922 64,511,000 Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Advanced
United States 3,944,000 17,348,075 17,348,075 54,370 54,370 0.924 318,523,000 Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Advanced
European Union 4,485,000 18,527,116 18,640,411 36,645 36,869 0.899 505,570,700 N/A Green tickY N/A Advanced[84]

The G7 is composed of the seven wealthiest advanced countries. The People's Republic of China, according to its data, would be the second-largest with the 16.4% of the world net wealth,[2] but is excluded because the IMF and other main global institutions do not consider China an advanced country and because of its relatively low net wealth per adult and HDI.[85][12] As of 2017 Crédit Suisse reports the G7 (without the European Union) represents above 62% of the global net wealth.[86] Including the EU the G7 represents over 70% of the global net wealth.[87]

Member facts

Special Invitations

French President Emmanuel Macron, the host of the G7 summit held in Biarritz in August 2019, has also invited non-member countries who are playing an important part in world politics. The invited guest nations include India, Australia, Spain, South Africa, Senegal and Rwanda.[99]


2014 suspension and following exclusion of Russian Federation

In March 2014 the Russian Federation was suspended by G7 members from the political forum G8 following the annexation of Crimea. After the suspension, on January 2017 the Russian Federation decided permanently to leave the G8. It was confirmed in June 2018.[100][101][102][103][104]

2015 protests

In 2015, despite Germany's immense efforts to prevent it and despite the remote location of the summit; the luxury hotel Schloss Elmau at the foot of the Wetterstein mountains (altitude of 1,008 m (3,307 ft) above sea level) about 300 of the 7,500 protesters led by the group 'Stop-G7' managed to reach the 3 m high and 7 km long security fence surrounding the summit location. The protesters questioned the legitimacy of the G7 to make decisions that could affect the whole world. Authorities had banned demonstrations in the closer area of the summit location and 20,000 policemen were on duty in Southern Bavaria to keep activists and protesters from interfering with the summit.[105][106]

2018 Trump conflict over tariffs and the Russian Federation

The 2018 meeting in Charlevoix, Canada, was marred by fractious negotiations concerning tariffs and Donald Trump's unorthodox position that Russia should be reinstated to the political forum G8, despite its limited national wealth and its lack of an advanced economy according to the IMF. The Trump administration had just imposed steel and aluminum tariffs on many countries, including European countries that are fellow members of the G7, and Canada, the host country for the 2018 meeting. Trump arrived late, left the meeting early, expressed dismay at Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau for holding a press conference in which Canada restated its position on tariffs (a public criticism of Trump's economic policy), and directed his representatives at the meeting to not sign the economic section of the joint communique that is typically issued at the conclusion of the meeting. An opinion writer at the Washington Post, Max Boot, opined that Trump had turned the meeting into a confrontation between the "G-6 versus the G-1."[107] and economist Paul Krugman suggested that it probably had more to do with whatever hold Putin has over Trump personally.[108]

German Chancellor Angela Merkel described Trump's behavior as a "depressing withdrawal," while French President Emmanuel Macron invited him "to be serious."[109] In the final statement signed by all members except the US, G7 announced its intention to recall sanctions and to be ready to take further restrictive measures within the next months against the Russian Federation for its failure to completely implement the Minsk Agreement.[76]

See also


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