The G7 is back: the fight against global warming, the COVID‑19 pandemic or species extinction – many challenges need a global response. The Group of Seven (G7) has been discussing the challenges facing the global economy, foreign and security policy, development and climate.
The COVID‑19 pandemic has highlighted once more that there are challenges which the international community can tackle together. This is a basic tenet of German foreign policy. The meetings of the Group of Seven (G7) are a key forum: an informal meeting of leading industrial nations. The UK holds the Presidency this year. The summit is taking place in Cornwall from 11 to 13 June. It provides a key opportunity to find a united response to global challenges. German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas emphasised on 11 June:
The G7 now gives us an opportunity to take each other at our word and to hold each other accountable: on the way out of the pandemic, topics such as vaccine fairness, sustainable economic development, climate and biodiversity will be of the highest importance as we head towards the Climate Change Conference in Glasgow in the autumn. Confirmation of the agreement among the G7 Finance Ministers on a global minimum tax rate would be a historic step forward.
G7: An informal forum of leading industrial nations
The global economy changed dramatically during the 1970s. Markets were rocked by the first oil crisis, while growing global trade revealed ever greater flaws in the fixed exchange‑rate system. For this reason, the Heads of State and Government of France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States met at the first “global economy summit” in Château de Rambouillet in France in 1975. The Group of Seven came into existence when Canada attended the summit the following year. Since then, the industrialised countries have met annually to discuss current political and economic issues. In addition to the summits, the G7 Foreign Ministers also meet on a regular basis to discuss foreign and security policy issues. This year’s meeting took place in London from 3 to 5 May.