Which countries are in the G7? Who is in Group of Seven, what is it, is Russia a member, when is 2023 summit?

Leaders of G7 countries have met in Germany at the annual summit for the group

World leaders have joined together for the latest G7 summit in Japan.

UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has joined the likes of US president Joe Biden, French president Emmanuell Macron and Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau to discuss pressing matter such as the war in Ukraine and the global food crisis in Hiroshoma. Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida will welcome the world leaders alongside special invitees including representatives from India and Ukraine.

The G7 has been a mainstay group of world politics for almost 50 years, with select countries meeting to discuss the newest developments in international politics. However, the group also attracts protests and opposition from demonstrators who call the forum an "imperialist" group.

But what exactly is the group’s purpose? And which countries are a member of the forum?

Here's everything you need to know

What is the G7?

The G7 is a forum for the world’s largest so-called “advanced” economies. The name comes from ‘group of seven’ - a reference to the number of members within the group.

Launched in 1975, the G7 was created to allow larger countries to discuss important developments in world politics. Leaders also focus on global efforts in other areas such as climate change, trade, economics and security.

Regular meetings and an annual summit is held to allow countries to meet to discuss such matters.

Which countries are in the G7?

The countries included in the group are:

  • Canada
  • France
  • Germany
  • Italy
  • Japan
  • United Kingdom
  • United States

Despite being the largest economy on earth and having the largest population, China has never been a member of the group. This is due to the low rate of wealth per person in the country, which means that it does not class as an “advanced economy”.

The EU is also not an official member of the group, however it does attend the annual summit held by the G7.

Has Russia ever been in the G7?

Russia had in fact been a member of the group, joining in 1998. This temporarily made the group the ‘G8’.

However, they were removed from the forum in 2014 after the country annexed the Crimean penninsula. Member states excluded the country after calling an emergency meeting at The Hague in response to the annexation.

Where is this year’s G7 summit being held?

Presidency for the G7 rotates between member states and the country holding the presidency hosts that year’s summit. Currently, Japan holds the presidency, meaning that the summit will be hosted by Prime Minister Fumio Kishida in Hiroshima.

Summits are planned year in advance in line with the rotating presidency. The 2024 summit is due to be held in Italy, with the 2025 summit descending upon Canada.

When is the 2023 G7 summit?

This year’s summit will be held from Friday 19 May until Sunday 21 May. The annual meeting is usually held around late Spring to early Summer each year.