Canada and the G7

The G7 is an informal grouping of seven of the world’s advanced economies consisting of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, the United States, and the European Union.

Since joining the G7 in 1976, Canada has further strengthened political and economic ties with the world’s most advanced economies and helped shape global progress on a broad range of issues.

In 2019, under France’s presidency, the G7 will focus on fighting inequalities, ensuring global stability and peace and working to give everyone the same opportunities in life.

As the 2018 G7 president, Canada put forward a progressive vision of a more equal, secure, sustainable and prosperous world—a vision that reflects Canadian values and ambitions.

The G7 is an informal grouping that brings together the world’s most advanced economies consisting of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, the United States and the European Union.

Statements and Declarations from previous meetings of the G7.

Overview of Canada and the G7

The G7 is a forum designed for frank and open discussion between leaders, ministers and policy-makers. As a member of the G7, Canada plays a leading role on the international stage and is able to promote and deliver on domestic and international priorities.

The G7 provides global leadership and plays a powerful catalyst role on issues that are later taken up by other forums with broader global and regional membership. The G7 brings together the world’s advanced economies to influence global trends and tackle pervasive and crosscutting issues. The G7 has strengthened international economic and security policy, mainstreamed climate change and gender equality, brought donors together and supported disarmament programs.

At the G7, Canada has advanced its key domestic and international priorities, including on gender equality, peace and security, climate change and building a sustainable global economy. Transparent and inclusive engagement with Canadian and international stakeholders has helped Canada to deliver on priorities that are important to Canadians at the G7.

The role as host, also known as the G7 presidency, rotates annually among member countries in the following order: France, United States, United Kingdom, Germany, Japan, Italy and Canada. The European Union is not part of this hosting rotation.

Canada has hosted six G7 summits to date:

  • Charlevoix, Quebec (2018)
  • Muskoka, Ontario (2010)
  • Kananaskis, Alberta (2002)
  • Halifax, Nova Scotia (1995)
  • Toronto, Ontario (1988)
  • Ottawa-Montebello, Ontario-Quebec (1981)

During Canada’s G7 presidencies, Canada has demonstrated global leadership by developing innovative initiatives to address global security and economic crises, and health and development challenges, while also forging new and ambitious ground on priorities such as cyber security, oceans, and women and girls’ education in crisis situations. The G7 amplifies Canadian efforts such as the historic investment of nearly $3.8 billion in education for women and girls in crisis and conflict situations at the 2018 Charlevoix G7 Summit.

France’s 2019 G7 presidency

In 2019, as host of the G7, France will focus G7 efforts on fighting inequality. France has put forward five goals for its G7 presidency:

  • Fighting inequality of opportunity, promoting in particular gender equality, access to education and high-quality health services
  • Reducing environmental inequality by protecting our planet through climate finance and a fair ecological transition, preserving biodiversity and the oceans
  • Promoting more fair and equitable trade, tax and development policies
  • Taking action for peace, against security threats and terrorism, which weaken the foundations of our societies
  • Tapping into the opportunities created by digital technology and artificial intelligence

The French G7 presidency will be advised by a Gender Equality Advisory Council, a new mechanism initiated by the Canadian presidency in 2018.

The 2019 G7 Summit will take place August 24 to 26 in Biarritz, France.

For more information, visit G7 France.

Canada’s 2018 G7 presidency

During its 2018 G7 presidency, Canada demonstrated global leadership, engaged G7 counterparts on pressing global challenges and advanced domestic and international priorities.

An important aspect of Canada’s presidency was the transparent and inclusive engagement with Canadian and international stakeholders. In addition to extensive in-person engagement sessions that took place across Canada, the G7 presidency reached out across multiple digital and social media channels to engage with Canadians throughout the year—and heard from thousands of stakeholders. Guided by this stakeholder engagement, Canada put forward an agenda that was relevant to Canadians and focused on global issues of interest to G7 partners. Canada welcomed the contribution to the 2018 presidency from seven engagement groups: Business 7 (B7), Civil Society 7 (C7), Labour 7 (L7), Science 7 (S7), Think Tank 7 (T7), Women 7 (W7) and Youth 7 (Y7).

On June 8 and 9, Canada hosted the G7 Leaders’ Summit in Charlevoix, Quebec—the highlight of the G7 calendar. G7 leaders held frank and constructive discussions on key global issues built around Canada’s themes:

  • investing in growth that works for everyone
  • preparing for jobs of the future
  • advancing gender equality and women’s empowerment
  • working together on climate change, oceans and clean energy
  • building a more peaceful and secure world

At the Summit, Canada, the European Union, Germany, Japan, the United Kingdom and the World Bank announced an investment of nearly $3.8 billion to support quality education for women and girls living in crisis and conflict-affected and fragile states. Canada announced $400 million toward the Charlevoix education initiative.

Canada welcomed leaders from Argentina, Bangladesh, Haiti, Jamaica, Kenya, Marshall Islands, Norway, Rwanda (as chairperson of the African Union), Senegal, Seychelles, South Africa and fellow APEC member Vietnam, as well as the heads of the United Nations, World Bank, International Monetary Fund and Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, for a special outreach session focused on how to build resilient coasts and communities, sustainable oceans and fisheries, and the problem of plastics in our oceans. After the session, Canada announced an investment of $100 million to rid our oceans of global marine litter and plastic pollution and $162 million to build stronger and more resilient coasts and communities in climate-vulnerable countries, including for small island developing states.

In addition to the Summit, Canada hosted four sets of G7 ministerial meetings, which aligned with the themes of Canada’s 2018 presidency:

  • Employment and innovation ministers met under the theme of Preparing for Jobs of the Future.
  • Foreign affairs and security ministers met under the theme of Building a More Peaceful and Secure World.
  • Finance and development ministers met under the theme of Investing in Growth That Works for Everyone.
  • Environment, oceans and energy ministers met under the theme of Working Together on Climate Change, Oceans and Clean Energy.

Canada integrated the fifth theme of Advancing Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment across all themes, activities and outcomes of Canada’s 2018 presidency.

Gender Equality Advisory Council

In its role as president, Canada created the Gender Equality Advisory Council for its G7 presidency in 2018. The Council was mandated to promote a transformative G7 agenda and support leaders and ministers in ensuring that gender equality and gender-based analysis were integrated across all themes, activities and outcomes of Canada’s G7 presidency.

The Council carried out its mandate by advising the G7 presidency and recommending concrete actions for the G7 to advance gender equality and women’s empowerment across all areas of the G7’s work. Council members participated in each of the G7 ministerial meetings and in one sherpa meeting, sharing their perspectives and recommendations with all G7 delegations.

On June 4, 2018, the Council launched its report, Make Gender Inequality History, proposing concrete recommendations for G7 action that call for:

  • safe, healthy, educated, heard and empowered girls and women, supported with the resources and opportunities they need to be agents of change in their own lives and for a better world
  • societies in which girls and women are equally represented in decision-making bodies and are free from harassment and violence
  • economies that are prosperous, innovative, inclusive and more equitable
  • a healthy and sustainable planet
  • a world that is peaceful, just and secure

Recommendations from the Council to make gender inequality history

Council meetings

The Gender Equality Advisory Council for Canada’s G7 presidency conducted virtual meetings and online exchanges throughout the year.

The Council held its first in-person meeting on April 25 and 26, in Ottawa, to discuss how to promote a transformative G7 agenda and support leaders and ministers in ensuring that gender equality and gender-based analysis are integrated across all themes, activities and outcomes of Canada’s G7 presidency. The Council also discussed its preliminary recommendations with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. The Council met with several cabinet ministers, the Women 7 (W7) formal engagement group and a variety of stakeholders.

The Council held its second in-person meeting on June 8, in Québec, to further discuss the promotion of gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls in the G7 context. On June 9, the Council participated in an engagement session with G7 leaders at the Charlevoix Summit.

Council’s final report and recommendations for future G7 presidencies

The Council’s final report, submitted to Canada’s G7 presidency in December 2018, provides an outline of progress made on gender equality under the Canadian presidency. It includes an assessment of past G7 commitments and offers recommendations for future G7 presidencies.

The report attests to considerable progress under Canada’s leadership, including the creation of the Gender Equality Advisory Council, the release of the Council’s Make Gender Inequality History report, a marked increase in the inclusion of gender equality issues and voices in G7 meetings and processes, and strengthened gender equality commitments across G7 outcomes.

In 2018 more G7 outcome documents and reports integrate or explicitly address gender equality than ever before: 81% compared to an average of 46% over the past five years. Together with the substantial financial commitment at Charlevoix to quality education for girls, adolescent girls and women in crisis and conflict situations, support for gender equality and women’s empowerment will stand as a central part of Canada’s 2018 G7 legacy.

The Council’s final report identifies gender equality gaps for future action by the G7 and offers recommendations for future G7 presidencies.

History and membership of G7

In 1976, Canada joined the leaders of France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States to discuss coordinated responses to global crises, and in 1977 the European Union was invited to attend. The G7 is not based on a treaty and has no permanent secretariat. The group’s presidency rotates annually among the seven member countries. It is the presidency’s prerogative to define a set of priorities, in consultation with other members, for the year ahead and is responsible for hosting and organizing the leaders’ summit. Leaders traditionally release a final statement or communiqué summarizing agreed initiatives and policy advancements.

A number of ministerial-level meetings may also take place during the year. Ministerial meetings are generally supported by a number of expert and working group meetings throughout the year, as directed by the presidency, and may culminate in ministerial communiqués or joint plans of action. Arms-length, civil society-led bodies called the G7 engagement groups typically provide recommendations for the G7 on an annual basis. These groups of stakeholders often hold their own summits in the months leading up to the G7 Summit. In 2018, the Business 7 (B7), Civil Society 7 (C7), Labour 7 (L7), Science 7 (S7), Think Tank 7 (T7), Women 7 (W7) and Youth 7 (Y7) each held summits.

G7 official documents

At the end of each ministerial meeting and the Leaders’ Summit, host countries publish an outcomes document. This document can be delivered as a communiqué, declaration, or chair’s statement. This document explains what was discussed at the meetings and what agreements were reached by G7 members.


G7 Ministerial Documents

Past G7 official documents

2018 official documents

G7 Summit documents

Final reports

Gender Equality Advisory Council

Engagement groups

G7 Ministerial Documents

G7 Public Engagement Papers

2017 official documents

G7 Summit Documents

G7 Ministerial Documents

2016 official documents

G7 Summit Documents

G7 Ministerial Documents

2015 official documents

G7 Summit Documents

G7 Ministerial Documents

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