The Group of Seven (G7) summit is attended by more countries than its name suggests. The Japanese Prime Minister is hosting this year’s meeting of democracies. They have expanded the guest list of the ceremony to promote relations with middle-power countries and global South voices.
How many countries are represented at the summit?
The G7 currently consists of the United States, Canada, Japan, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, and Italy, along with the European Union as a “non-enumerated member,” but this forum has been inviting non-member countries for many years, such as India, Poland, and Spain.
This year, leaders and representatives from 16 countries, including the European Union, are participating in the three-day G7 summit. Additionally, President Zelensky of Ukraine has also held meetings with leaders of participating countries.
In addition to G7 members and the European Union, leaders from India, Brazil, Indonesia, Vietnam, Australia, South Korea, and the Comoros and Cook Islands are participating. African Union and PIFS (Pacific Islands Forum) are also represented.
Why does the G7 want to strengthen relations with developing countries?
While the G7 is committed to promoting a united front in pressuring Russia to end its war in Ukraine, the majority of the international community has refused to take sides in the conflict.
Western leadership, besides Japan, has been pushing for sanctions against Russia.
Russia’s trade with G7 countries has declined, while China, India, and Turkey have taken advantage of Russia’s increasing revenues from coal, oil, and gas by obtaining them at much cheaper rates. Russia’s economy contracted by only 2.2% in 2022, which is much lower than expected.