G7 Summit in Biarritz

The G7 continues to play an important role in the Global Governance architecture although it has moved into the background since the founding of the G20. As an association of the largest industrial nations, the G7 was established in the mid-1970s as an informal meeting of heads of state and government. However, the economic rise of a number of emerging economies made the summits of Western industrial nations, including Japan, increasingly peripheral. At the 2007 Heiligendamm Summit, the G7 attempted to increase its relevance by inviting a number of emerging economies to attend. This was followed at the height of the global financial crisis in December 2008 by the establishment of the G20 at the level of heads of state and government. A decade after the changing of the guard by the G20, however, the G7 has by no means disappeared into insignificance. The G7's commitment to decarbonising the world economy at the summit in Elmau, Germany, in June 2015 played an important role in the successful conclusion of the Paris Climate Agreement in December 2015, for example. At the latest since Donald Trump took office as US President in 2017, the G7 summits - and the associated disputes over the importance of international cooperation - have once again come to the fore of the global public.

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