What are the G7 countries? List of democracies involved in the Cornwall meeting - and how it differs to G8 and G20

World leaders will be in Carbis Bay, Cornwall, this weekend to discuss a wide range of issues

A number of world leaders including US president Joe Biden are currently amassed in the usually-quiet village of Carbis Bay in Cornwall for the annual G7 summit.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel will also be in attendance, and prime minister Boris Johnson arrived in Cornwall via plane yesterday afternoon to attend.

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Each year a different member nation acts as the president of the group and hosts the G7 summit, with this year being the UK’s turn.

What are the G7 countries? List of democracies involved in the Cornwall meeting - and how it differs to G8 and G20 (Photo by Leon Neal/Getty Images)

Who is in the G7?

The Group of Seven, or G7, is currently made up of seven of the largest advanced economies in the world.

These are the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy and Japan.

Since being set up in the 70s, the number of countries classed as members of the group has changed, from four initially, to eight in 1998.

Russia, the eighth member of the group, was suspended in 2014 over the annexation of Crimea, and is yet to be readmitted, despite support from Donald Trump at the last summit in 2019.

Prior to Russia’s exclusion from the group, it was referred to as the G8.

Trump was also among many who have criticised the G7 as being outdated because it does not include two of the world’s largest nations, China and India.

Last year was the first since 1975 without a summit involving at least some of the current G7 members, due to the pandemic.

What happens at a G7 summit?

The summits provide an opportunity for world leaders, including elected heads of state but also central bank CEOs and finance ministers, to discuss major global issues.

One of the main areas of discussion among G7 members prior to the summit has been on proposals for a standardised global rate of corporation tax.

The need for continued and increased cooperation on climate change is also a major point of discussion.

There will be formal meetings held with all members of the group, as well as off-shoot formal discussions between representatives from two or more countries.

Events such as the G7 summit also provide an opportunity for less formal meetings between heads of state to take place.

They also allow leaders to bring up contentious issues with their foreign counterparts.

As well as the member nations, representatives of other countries or groups of countries are often also in attendance.The European Union generally sends representatives to the summits, and this year India, South Korea and Australia have also been invited to attend.

What is the G20?

While the G7 consists of most of the largest advanced economies in the world, there is another grouping which has annual summits involving world leaders.

The G20 is a much bigger group which also holds an annual summit.

It includes all of the largest advanced economies, plus the fastest-growing.

The members of the G20 are Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Republic of Korea, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Turkey, the United Kingdom, the United States, and the European Union.