What was it?
The G7 Summit took place in Cornwall across three days, presided over by the UK, and brought together world leaders to unite on the bounce-back from COVID-19 and plan for a greener, fairer future by committing to shared global values. The seven G7 countries are Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK and the US, and leaders from Australia, India, South Africa, and South Korea were also invited to attend the Summit as guest countries. The Queen and senior members of the royal family also attended the summit, arriving at the Eden Project to host a joint dinner for the leaders of the G7.
What was discussed?
The G7 nations promised to tackle China’s growing influence, tackle climate change, allocate and deliver more Covid-19 jabs to poorer countries and keep up their economic stimulus programmes.
What was agreed?
Brexit – Discussions were tense, but Boris Johnson stated that he would do “whatever it takes” to protect the territorial integrity of the UK.
International Monetary Fund – The G7 did not commit to setting in stone steps for richer countries to reallocate $100 billion of their share of IMF funds to poorer countries hit by Covid-19, saying they wanted other countries to contribute too.
Covid Vaccinations – The G7 agreed to donate 1 billion Covid-19 vaccine doses to poorer countries over the next 12 months.
Climate Change – Leaders agreed to meet a long overdue funding pledge of $100 billion a year to help poorer countries cut their emissions and cope with global warming. They also promised to begin the reversal of global biodiversity loss by 2030.
Economy – Leaders agreed to continue their economic support programmes “for as long as is necessary” and ensure long-term sustainability.
China – China was highlighted during discussions for their global influence. G7 leaders called for a full investigation into the origins of the novel coronavirus and agreed to offer an infrastructure plan that could rival Beijing’s Belt and Road Initiative.
Russia – Leaders demanded that Russia take action to halt cyber attacks demanding ransoms from businesses in the West.
What else happened?
- A huge sculpture made from 20,000 of e-waste and dubbed ‘Mount Recyclemore’ popped up in Cornwall just in time for the summit. The scupture, depicting the 7 faces of the G7 leaders, was created by artist Joe Rush and sculptor Alex Wreckage to highlight the environmental impact of discarded tech.
- The summit provoked a number of protests near to the Cornish location, including a march by 500 extinction rebellion campaigners through the streets of Falmouth, as surfers, paddleboarders and kayakers took to the ocean to take part in a protest off Gyllyngvase beach.
- Boris Johnson received backlash for flying to the coast from his home in London, with many questionning whether this was the most environmentally friendly way of him attending a summit addressing climate change. Boris defended the flight and pointed to his plan to reach “jet zero as well as net zero”.