G7: Here’s what you need to know about the World Leaders’ Meeting in England

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The G7 is short for Group of Seven, an organization of leaders from some of the world’s largest economies: Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the US.

Russia was indefinitely banned from the group — known at the time as the G8 — in 2014 after most member states allyed against the annexation of Crimea. It was the first violation of the borders of a European country since World War II.

What does the G7 do?

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Members of the G7 meet every year for a summit to discuss pressing issues on the global stage and coordinate policy.

International security and the global economy are often discussed, although recovery of the Covid-19 pandemic is expected to dominate this year’s meeting.
First formal session of the economic summit comprising the seven most industrialized countries in the world in the House of Burgesses.

In a statement ahead of the summit, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he will urge his fellow G7 leaders at the summit to make concrete commitments to vaccinate the world, as well as support the “Global Pandemic Radar” – a new global surveillance system intended to protect vaccination programs.

What power does the G7 have?

G7 leaders and outreach guests including German Chancellor Angela Merkel (2-R) and US President Barack Obama (2-L) attend a working session at the G7 summit in Schloss Elmau on June 8, 2015 in near Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany.

The G7 is primarily a meeting place for coordination, and the group has made decisions with global implications.

For example, ahead of this year’s summit, G7 finance ministers agreed to worldwide minimum tax of at least 15% on multinational companies. The G7 group also agreed that the largest companies should pay taxes where they generate revenue, not just where they have a physical presence.

US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said on Saturday the agreement was a “major, unprecedented commitment” by the world’s richest economies to prevent companies from evading taxes by shifting profits abroad.

What is the history of the G7?

Saburo Okita, Pierre Elliot Trudeau, Helmut Schmidt, Valéry Giscard D'Estaing, Francesco Cossiga, Jimmy Carter, Margaret Thatcher and Roy Jenkins attend the 1980 G7 Summit on June 22, 1980, San Giorgio Island, Venice, Italy.

The meetings began as the “Library Group,” founded in the 1970s by then-U.S. Treasury Secretary George Shultz.

Treasury ministers from the US, France, Germany and the UK met for informal “fireside talks” to try to stabilize currency turbulence.

Soon after, Japan joined and in 1975 – two of the original participants were then the French president and the German president – the meetings were changed to meetings of heads of state and government.

Canada and Italy soon joined and they became known as the Group of Seven.

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