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25th G8 summit: Map

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The 25th G8 Summit was held at Cologne, Germany between June 18 and 20, 1999. The venue for this summit meeting was the Museum Ludwigmarker in the central city.

Overview

The Group of Seven (G7) was an unofficial forum which brought together the heads of the richest industrialized countries: Francemarker, Germanymarker, Italymarker, Japanmarker, the United Kingdommarker, the United Statesmarker and Canadamarker starting in 1976. The G8, meeting for the first time in 1997, was formed with the addition of Russiamarker. In addition, the President of the European Commission has been formally included in summits since 1981. The summits were not meant to be linked formally with wider international institutions; and in fact, a mild rebellion against the stiff formality of other international meetings was a part of the genesis of cooperation between France's President Giscard d'Estaing and Germany's Chancellor Helmut Schmidt as they conceived the initial summit of the Group of Six (G6) in 1975.

The G8 summits since the late 1990s have inspired widespread debates, protests and demonstrations; and the two- or three-day event becomes more than the sum of its parts, elevating the participants, the issues and the venue as focal points for activist pressure.

Leaders at the Summit

Permanent G8 participants



Priorities

Traditionally, the host country of the G8 summit sets the agenda for negotiations, which take place primarily amongst multi-national civil servants in the weeks before the summit itself, leading to a joint declaration which all countries can agree to sign.

Issues

The summit was intended as a venue for resolving differences among its members. As a practical matter, the summit was also conceived as an opportunity for its members to give each other mutual encouragement in the face of difficult economic decisions.

Business opportunity

For some, the G8 summit became a profit-generating event; as for example, the official G8 Summit magazines which have been published under the auspices of the host nations for distribution to all attendees since 1998.

Notes

  1. Japan, Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA): Summit Meetings in the Past.
  2. Saunders, Doug. "Weight of the world too heavy for G8 shoulders," Globe and Mail (Toronto). July 5, 2008.
  3. Reuters: "Factbox: The Group of Eight: what is it?", July 3, 2008.
  4. Reinalda, Bob and Bertjan Verbeek. (1998). Autonomous Policy Making by International Organizations, p. 205.
  5. "Influencing Policy on International Development: G8," BOND (British Overseas NGOs for Development). 2008.
  6. Prestige Media: "official" G8 Summit magazine


References



External links




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