What is the G7 and why is the 2021 summit in Cornwall?
Political leaders to gather and discuss key global issues, including Covid-19 and climate change
The G7 summit is being held in Cornwall, a corner of south-west England usually reserved for tourism that is also becoming a pioneering green region.
Thousands of police officers have been drafted in ahead of the meeting to manage every potential scenario, from community issues and protests to a terrorist attack.
What is the G7?
The Group of Seven is an international, political organisation made up of the world’s seven largest economies.
It was created in 1973 and its leaders gathered for the first time in 1975. The summit is an avenue for the major world powers to tackle the most pressing issues.
The annual meeting, which includes the political leaders of each member country, is the highlight of the G7 calendar.
Russia joined in 1998 to form the G8, but it was expelled in 2014 after annexing Crimea from Ukraine.
China and India have never become members despite their size and economic power.
The G7 can not pass laws but it can be influential. This year, there are moves to ensure multinational companies and tech giants pay their fair rate of tax.
In 2002, the G7 played a crucial role in setting up a fund to tackle AIDS and malaria worldwide.
While the effects of G7 decisions can be felt for years, the organisation has been criticised for not widening its circle of members.
What will security be like?
Thousands of officers have been drafted in from across the UK to help police the G7 summit being held in Carbis Bay at the Carbis Bay Hotel from June 11 to 13.
The Devon and Cornwall force will operate a “neighbourhood style” of policing but will be ready for any scenario.
Armed officers, still a rarity in the UK, and police dogs will be working on the front line, guarding security cordons around the venue.
Residents in the Carbis Bay and St Ives areas are warned to expect travel delays, road closures and diversions.
They will need to show two forms of identification if they want to pass through security checkpoints.
Who will be protesting?
Almost 40 groups said they would be arranging protests, although most will not get near the summit.
Four designated sites are set up outside of Carbis Bay, with the farthest being 170km away in Exeter, Devon.
Climate change activists Extinction Rebellion is among the groups planning to stage protests away from the designated site.
Police are prepared for all eventualities.
What is on the agenda?
The coronavirus pandemic and climate change are two key items up for discussion.
Covid-19 has dominated the past 12 months and over the next year the start of an economic recovery is expected.
There will also be an effort to get as many people vaccinated as possible by launching inoculation campaigns in some of the world’s poorest countries.
Climate change is high on the agenda, with UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson having set a new national goal for reducing carbon emissions in the build-up to the summit.
There will also be renewed calls to reduce oil and gas production in favour of renewable energy.
A landmark corporate taxation deal was agreed last week by G7 finance ministers, which set a global minimum corporate tax of at least 15 per cent.
Who will be attending?
The summit is the annual gathering of the political leaders of each G7 nation:
- US President Joe Biden
- German Chancellor Angela Merkel
- Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga
- Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi
- Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau
- French President Emmanuel Macron
- British Prime Minister Boris Johnson
Also invited are leaders of non-member countries and EU representatives:
- President of the European Council Charles Michel
- President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen
- Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison
- South Korean President Moon Jae-in
- South African President Cyril Ramaphosa
- Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who will attend virtually because of the Covid-19 surge in his country
Where is it being held?
The summit takes place on June 11 to 13 in Carbis Bay, Cornwall.
It is one of the first in-person, international gatherings to take place since the Covid-19 lockdowns.
Cornwall is being promoted as an ideal location for world leaders focusing on climate change.
The county has 400 miles of coastline and is a national driver of eco ideas, including the Eden Project, the country's first geothermal power plant and lithium extraction site.
Updated: June 8, 2021 06:39 PM