G7 summit: climate and Covid recovery top leaders' list of demands
Leaders expected to support donation of one billion Covid-19 vaccines to poorer countries
G7 leaders are expected to agree to collectively donate one billion Covid-19 vaccines to poorer countries when they meet on Friday.
But each leader of the Group of Seven wealthy countries arrives in Cornwall, England with their own priorities and objectives for the summit.
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson
As host of the G7 and the UN’s Cop26 climate conference, Mr Johnson is likely to put global warming high on the agenda – even as he was criticised for making the 400-kilometre journey from London to Cornwall by plane, rather than train.
In his pre-summit discussions with Mr Biden, the UK premier said he hoped the US president would attend Cop26 in Glasgow later this year in person.
“The leaders agreed to not only work to reach net zero in their own countries, but also to make sure that developing world economies had access to green technology,” a Downing Street statement said.
The future of post-Brexit Northern Ireland is also expected to be raised.
US President Joe Biden
Aside from vaccine efforts, Mr Biden wants agreements that will support the post-Covid 19 global economy and help to tackle global warming.
He wants to discuss “ways to forge a more fair, sustainable, and inclusive global economy that meets the unique challenges of our time”, the White House said.
Mr Biden also expects G7 leaders to back his push for a global minimum corporation tax of at least 15 per cent.
He previously expressed concerns about increasing tensions in Northern Ireland after Brexit.
French President Emmanuel Macron
Mr Macron is prepared to act tough with Mr Johnson after Brexit, as a row over the UK’s post-EU trade relations with the bloc threatens to overshadow the G7 summit.
An impasse between the UK and EU over border checks in Northern Ireland has already led to US diplomats warning of increased tensions.
Mr Macron said no aspect of the protocol governing Northern Ireland’s post-Brexit border terms with Ireland is up for negotiation.
He could also clash with the UK and Germany over intellectual property rights for vaccines. The two countries are at odds with Mr Macron, who wants vaccine patents waived to help end the pandemic.
“Dose sharing, opening up of intellectual property, financing of health systems. It's up to the G7 to get involved,” he said.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel
Ms Merkel, attending her 15th and last G7 summit, said she wants further discussions with the US on the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project.
The US is against the nearly completed, Russian-backed pipeline – in opposition to Germany.
Ms Merkel is also expected to raise actions by Belarus that have caused alarm and is likely to want to talk about relations with China and Russia.
Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga
Speaking before his first G7 summit, Mr Suga said he hoped to discuss the pandemic, climate and other key issues.
“At this G7 summit, I hope to have a frank discussion with other G7 leaders who share universal values on important issues such as coronavirus measures, climate change, economy and regional affairs. I plan to explain Japan’s position on those issues and contribute to the summit talks,” Mr Suga said.
He also said he plans to gain support for his determination to host the Summer Olympics, starting on July 23, despite the pandemic.
“I would like to explain our determination to thoroughly implement the anti-infection measures to achieve a safe and secure Games and gain understanding from the leaders,” Mr Suga said.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau
Mr Trudeau is expected to announce an increase in climate finance and will also discuss Covid-19 vaccines and recovery efforts.
“Only by working together can we beat this pandemic, create good jobs, fight climate change, and build a better future for everyone,” he said on departing for the G7.
Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi
Mr Draghi, an economist widely credited with saving the euro during his presidency of the European Central Bank for much of the 2010s, became prime minister only in February.
As host of the larger group of G20 countries, pandemic recovery is high on his agenda.
He is seen as more ambivalent on green issues than some of the other leaders.
Updated: June 11, 2021 04:42 PM