By Vincent Magwenya
President Cyril Ramaphosa will travel to Schloss Elmau in the Federal Republic of Germany on Sunday, 26 June 2022, to participate in the G7 Leaders’ Summit at the invitation of the host, Chancellor Olaf Scholz.
The Summit is scheduled to take place on Monday, 27 June 2022.
Alongside the G7 member states, invited non-member states that will participate in the Summit are the Republic of South Africa, the Republic of Argentina, the Republic of India, the Republic of Indonesia and the Republic of Senegal.
Germany has indicated that it will seek to strengthen the G7’s responsibility for working towards “the global common good”, thus expanding cooperation with all partners, especially within the framework of the United Nations and the G20, based on a fair and rules-based multilateral system.
Reflecting the outward-looking approach of recent Presidencies of the G7, guest leaders are invited to join outreach sessions within the summit agenda. In order to ensure that this involvement is meaningful, Germany has also invited international organisations and guest experts in specific outreach sessions, whilst preserving space and time for G7 member-only agendas, discussions and negotiations.
South Africa will participate in two outreach sessions scheduled for 27 June 2022. The first will be a working lunch on “Investing in the future”, where issues of climate, energy and health will be discussed, followed by a working session titled “Stronger Together”, where the Summit will address food security issues and advancing gender equality.
South Africa has been a regular invitee of the G7. Participation in the 2022 Leaders’ Summit presents an opportunity for the country to highlight the concerns of developing countries and to advocate for the continued global attention for equitable distribution of resources, particularly with regards to the on-going pandemic as well as economic recovery measures.
Collectively, the G7 countries represent approximately 40% of global gross domestic product (GDP) and 10% of the world’s population. The agenda of the G7 has, since the turn of the century, evolved from a sole focus on discussions on economic and financial issues to matters of peace and security, global governance, international terrorism, the environment, refugees and other geo-political and foreign policy related matters.
The G7 was formally established in 1975 following the financial crisis brought about by the 1973 oil crisis. In an attempt to improve the coordination of global economic and financial policy, the initial meetings were held by the Finance Ministers of the world’s five most industrialized and developed countries – France, Germany, Japan, the US, and the UK, who were later joined by Canada and Italy at a Presidential level, to form the G7.