The Group of Seven (G7) leaders will convene in Hiroshima, Japan, to showcase their solidarity and strength while promoting and preserving the rule-based global order amid the increasing threats from Russia and China. The event, which runs from 19 to 21 May, will be the 49th annual gathering of the world’s largest advanced democracies, including the US, Japan, Germany, the UK, Italy, France, and Canada. Despite his ongoing negotiations with congressional leaders regarding the debt ceiling, President Joe Biden plans to attend the summit, shortening his travel itinerary to return to Washington promptly. Although G7 summits usually do not attract much attention, this year’s meeting is being widely anticipated due to the message it may send to Russia and China.
Prime Minister Fumio Kishida of Japan chose Hiroshima as the venue for the G7 as a symbolic gesture to promote nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation. This year’s summit aims to expose the risks of nuclear weapons and highlight Hiroshima’s notoriety for being the site of the deadliest military operation in human history.
The war in Ukraine and global inflation will be the top agenda items for this year’s gathering, according to Matthew Goodman, the senior vice president for economics at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. This year’s summit is expected to be a significant test of Japan’s global presence. Japan’s emphasis on nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation is driven by Russia’s insinuations of using tactical nuclear weapons in Ukraine and could be instrumental in countering China and Russia’s hegemonic aspirations in Latin America, Africa, and Asia.
The G7’s outreach to the Global South is a vital component of this year’s summit. Leaders of Australia, Brazil, India, Indonesia, the Republic of Korea, Vietnam, the Cook Islands (representing the Pacific Island Forum), and the Comoros (representing the African Union) will attend the meet. Climate change is a crucial focus, but the G7 heads of state must also address their countries’ energy needs following Russia’s aggression against Ukraine and sanctions. Additionally, AI will be another prevalent topic at the conference, as world leaders are fascinated by the potential of this fast-evolving technology as well as its potential risks. The G7 leaders will also discuss the development of resilient supply chains and how to handle non-market policies and economic coercion.