The Group of Seven or G7 is a group consisting of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States. These countries, with the 7 largest advanced economies in the world, represent more than 62% of the global net wealth ($280 trillion). The G7 countries also represent 46% of the global nominal GDP evaluated at market exchange rates and 32% of the global purchasing power parity GDP. The European Union is also represented at the G7 summit.
The concept of a forum for the world's major industrialized countries emerged prior to 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. Taking their name from the setting, this original group of four became known as the "Library Group". In mid-1973, at the World Bank-IMF meetings, Shultz proposed the addition of Japan to the original four nations, who agreed. 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"
Later, a 1975 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; 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 Canada's Pierre Trudeau was invited to join the group and the group became the Group of Seven (G7). 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 and 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 and what they agreed. The summit was announced the day before and a communiqué was issued afterwards.
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, 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. Russia in fact had and has limited net national wealth and financial weight, compared to the other members of the forum G7. Russia also hasn't ever been a major advanced economy according to IMF. However Russia was ejected from the G8 political forum in March 2014 following the Russian annexation of Crimea.
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.
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 4 times a year at stand-alone meetings.
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". 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.
In 2008 the G7 met twice in Washington, D.C. to discuss the global financial crisis of 2007–2008 and in February 2009 in Rome. The group of finance ministers pledged to take "all necessary steps" to stem the crisis.
On 2 March 2014, the G7 condemned the "Russian Federation's violation of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine." 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." 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. 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. This meeting was the first since Russia was expelled from the group G8 following its annexation of Crimea in March.
The annual G7 leaders summit is attended by the heads of government. 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. Generally every country hosts summit every 7 years.
|Date||Host||Host leader||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||Also called "Rambouillet II". Canada joined the group, forming the G7|
|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 which 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|||
|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.|
|23rd||20–22 June 1997||United States||Bill Clinton||Denver, Colorado||||Russia joins the group, forming G8|
|24th||15–17 May 1998||United Kingdom||Tony Blair||Birmingham, West Midlands|||
|25th||18–20 June 1999||Germany||Gerhard Schröder||Cologne, North Rhine-Westphalia||||First Summit of the G-20 major economies at Berlin|
|26th||21–23 July 2000||Japan||Yoshiro Mori||Nago, Okinawa||||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.|
|27th||20–22 July 2001||Italy||Silvio Berlusconi||Genoa, Liguria||||Leaders from Bangladesh, Mali and El Salvador accepted their invitations here. Demonstrator Carlo Giuliani is shot and killed by police during a violent demonstration. One of the largest and most violent anti-globalization movement protests occurred for the 27th G8 summit. 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||||Russia gains permission to officially host a G8 Summit.|
|29th||2–3 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.|
|30th||8–10 June 2004||United States||George W. Bush||Sea Island, Georgia||||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. Also, the state funeral of former President Ronald Reagan took place in Washington during the summit.|
|31st||6–8 July 2005||United Kingdom||Tony Blair||Gleneagles, Scotland||||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. 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.|
|32nd||15–17 July 2006||Russia (only G8 member, not G7)||Vladimir Putin||Strelna, Saint Petersburg||First G8 Summit on Russian soil. Also, the International Atomic Energy Agency and UNESCO made their debut here.|
|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.|
|34th||7–9 July 2008||Japan||Yasuo Fukuda||Tōyako, Hokkaidō||||Nations that accepted their G8 Summit invitations for the first time are: Australia, Indonesia and South Korea.|
|35th||8–10 July 2009||Italy||Silvio Berlusconi||La Maddalena, Sardinia (cancelled)
L'Aquila, Abruzzo (re-located)
|||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. 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.|
|36th||25–26 June 2010||Canada||Stephen Harper||Huntsville, Ontario||||Malawi, Colombia, Haiti, and Jamaica accepted their invitations for the first time.|
|37th||26–27 May 2011||France||Nicolas Sarkozy||Deauville, 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.|
|38th||18–19 May 2012||United States||Barack Obama||Chicago, Illinois (cancelled)
Camp David, Maryland (re-located)
|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. 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||||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.|
|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. The 2014 G8 summit in Sochi was cancelled and re-located to Brussels, Belgium without Russia. Emergency meeting in March 2014 in The Hague.|
|41st||7–8 June 2015||Germany||Angela Merkel||Schloss Elmau, Bavaria||||Summit dedicated to focus on the global economy as well as on key issues regarding foreign, security and development policy. The Global Apollo Programme was also on the agenda.|
|42nd||26–27 May 2016||Japan||Shinzō Abe||Shima, Mie Prefecture||||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". Commitment to an EU–Japan Free Trade Agreement.|
|43rd||26–27 May 2017||Italy||Paolo Gentiloni||Taormina, Sicily||||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.|
|44th||8–9 June 2018||Canada||Justin Trudeau||La Malbaie, Quebec||||To be held at the Manoir Richelieu. Prime Minister Trudeau announced five themes for Canada’s G7 presidency which began in January 2018. Under the “Working together on climate change, oceans and clean energy” theme, Canada is hosting domestic and international discussions to advance priorities specifically focusing on oceans. These discussions will bring together experts to discuss challenges and opportunities both domestically and internationally, to move toward zero plastic waste and mitigating marine plastic litter, including microplastics.|
|45th||TBD, 2019||France||Emmanuel Macron||TBD|
|46th||TBD, 2020||United States||Donald Trump||TBD|
|47th||TBD, 2021||United Kingdom||Theresa May||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|
|Prime Minister||Édouard Philippe|
|Germany||Chancellor||Angela Merkel||Minister of Finance||Peter Altmaier||Jens Weidmann|
|Italy||Prime Minister||Paolo Gentiloni||Minister of Economy
|Pier Carlo Padoan||Ignazio Visco|
|Japan||Prime Minister||Shinzō Abe||Minister of Finance||Tarō Asō||Haruhiko Kuroda|
|United Kingdom||Prime Minister||Theresa May||Chancellor of the Exchequer||Philip Hammond||Mark Carney|
|United States||President||Donald Trump||Secretary of the Treasury||Steven Mnuchin||Jerome Powell|
|European Union||Council President||Donald Tusk||Commissioner for Economic
and Monetary Affairs
and the Euro
|Jyrki Katainen||Mario Draghi|
|Commission President||Jean-Claude Juncker|
|Member||Trade mil. USD (2014)||Nom. GDP mil. USD (2014)||PPP GDP mil. USD (2014)||Nom. GDP per capita USD (2014)||PPP GDP per capita USD (2014)||HDI (2015)||Population (2014)||Permanent members of UN Security Council||DAC||OECD||Economic classification (IMF)|
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 (10.3% of the world net wealth) in the world,, but is excluded because the IMF and other main global institutions do not consider China an advanced country because of its relatively low net wealth per adult and its not major advanced economy. As of 2017 Crédit Suisse reports the G7 (without the European Union) represents above 62% of the global net wealth. Including the EU the G7 represents over 70% of the global net wealth.
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 at an altitude of 1008 m above sea level, about 300 of the 7500 peaceful 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 legitimation 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.
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