Engaging with countries of the Global South on truly equal footing

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G7 Summit in Japan from 19 to 21 May Engaging with countries of the Global South on truly equal footing

The meeting of the heads of state and government of the G7 countries in Hiroshima has come to an end. Further support for Ukraine, issues related to global economic security, climate protection and partnership with the Global South were among the key issues addressed. Among other things, the G7 commemorated the atomic bombing of 1945.

Family portrait with the participants of the G7 Summit and representatives of the invited partner countries and international organisations.

Extended family portrait: the G7 with the invited partner countries and international organisations.

Photo: Federal Government/Zahn

After three-days, the meeting of the heads of state and government of the G7 countries in Hiroshima has come to an end. “We carefully deliberated together and have made some good decisions,” Federal Chancellor Scholz explained. 

Combating climate change, greater global security, eye-to-eye discussions with nations of the Global South: Scholz described the decisions made as “a clear commitment to a better world that is supported by democracies with strong economies”. The G7 discussed these issues with each other, as well as with several partner countries from the Global South. The Federal Chancellor pointed out that multilateral cooperation paves the way towards a better future. 

United response to the Russian offensive

Hiroshima, where the heads of state and government met, is a highly symbolic place, where they also spoke about war and peace, specifically in view of the Russian war of aggression against Ukraine. “Our message,” Scholz said, “is that Russia must end the war and withdraw its troops. We will continue to support Ukraine for as long as necessary”.

The G7 adopted a joint Leader’s Statement on Ukraine in Hiroshima. They promised once again that the country would receive the support it needs for as long as needed, in the form of humanitarian and financial resources, as well as weapons. A broad consensus of the G7 states was important in this matter, the Federal Chancellor explained, “since this also includes the message that just peace can only be achieved if Russia accepts that it must end this war and withdraw its troops”.

The G7 Hiroshima Leaders’ Communiqué from 20 May 2023 and the Statement on Ukraine from 19 May 2023 can be found here. All summit documents are also available on our overview page.

The Group of Seven (G7) is an informal forum of leading industrialised nations and democracies. Its members are Germany, Canada, France, Italy, Japan, the UK and the United States of America. The European Union is also represented at all G7 meetings.

Focussing on global development

Further items on the agenda included topics such as the global economy, foreign and security policy, joint sustainability and climate protection efforts. On the first day of their discussions, the G7 spoke about issues of global development, in particular “how greater resilience can be achieved in international economic relations,” Federal Chancellor Scholz said, adding that one aspect in this regard was to limit risks due to dependency on a single or a small number of countries. The G7 adopted a joint Statement on Economic Resilience and Economic Security .

Vital exchange with partner countries

In the same context, cooperation with countries in South America, Africa and Asia, which should benefit from their wealth of natural resources, is also of great importance. Federal Chancellor Scholz stressed that the G7 states want to “engage with countries of the Global South on truly equal footing. For example, by making sure that they can more frequently process their own raw materials so they can benefit from their natural resources.” 

To this end, the G7 welcomed numerous partner states and representatives of international organisations in Hiroshima on the second day of the Summit. In a joint work session, they talked about cooperation for a peaceful, stable and prosperous world – in view of nutrition, health and development, among other aspects. The participants of the Summit also adopted an Action Statement for Resilient Global Food Security .

Further exchange took place during a side event concerning partnership for global infrastructure and investment. 

In addition to the G7 members, Japan had also invited some partner countries to the Summit. Among these were India (current G20 Presidency), Brazil (G20 Presidency in 2024) and Indonesia (ASEAN Chair and G20 Presidency in 2022). The African Union was represented by Comoros. The Summit was also attended by Vietnam, South Korea and Australia. The Cook Islands were invited as the current Pacific Islands Forum (Pacific island countries) Chair. Representatives of international organisations were invited by Japan to take part in a number of work sessions.

Dialogue with civil society is being promoted further during the Japanese G7 Presidency through lively exchange with the business community (Business7), civil society (Civil7), the working world (Labour7), science (Science7), women (Women7), young people (Youth7) and think tanks (Think7).

Broad support for the Climate Club

The G7 states also intend to do everything they can to stop human-made climate change and to operate carbon-neutrally by the middle of this century. „The global Climate Club that we promoted during our Presidency now receives broad support and it will play a vital role also for future policy-making.” In their Clean Energy Economy Action Plan the G7 states repeat their commitment to “continued collaboration with international partners in the global efforts to decarbonise our economies in the context of an open, cooperative and inclusive Climate Club”.

The open and cooperative international Climate Club was founded during the German Presidency, and all dedicated countries are welcome to join and contribute to a reduction of emissions in industry. The goal is to achieve carbon-neutral operation paired with economic success.

Building upon the results achieved in Elmau

The G7 is an important forum for addressing global challenges together. Cooperation with countries in Africa, Asia and the Americas had already played an important role last year, when Germany had consciously included the states of the Global South during its G7 Presidency. Tangible results of the G7 Presidency in this respect included:

  • the Partnership for Global Infrastructure
  • the Alliance for Global Food Security
  • the Just Energy Transition Partnerships Initiative