The Group of Seven (G7), consisting of the UK, France, Japan, Germany, Italy, Canada and the US, had an abundance of issues to discuss during the 2021 Summit held in Cornwall.
As the UK held the Presidency this year, we asked MPs their opinion on the G7 using the Savanta ComRes Parliamentary Panel.
If the G7 were to become the G8 once again, the largest support in the Commons would be for Australia to join...
As the global geopolitical landscape has changed since the G7’s inception in the 1970s, MPs were questioned on whether it still holds significance today. Five in six (83%) MPs believe the G7 is significant, whilst one in ten (8%) MPs do not believe it is significant in today’s geopolitical landscape. One in four (24%) MPs believe the G7 is very significant, indicating strong support for the continuation of the annual Summit.
The US and UK have both indicated support for returning to a ‘G8’ – Russia were disinvited in 2014 following the annexation of Crimea – with proposed additional members including India, South Korea and Australia.
If the G7 were to become the G8 once again, the largest support in the Commons would be for Australia to join, as one in four (23%) MPs would pick the nation first. India and China both closely follow Australia as the favoured country to join, having support of one in five (20%) MPs each.
MPs do not appear convinced of reinviting Russia to the Group, as only one in twenty (5%) MPs would select Russia as their first choice. African nations appear the least desired options if the G7 were to officially invite a new member, as South Africa and Nigeria only have the support of one in one hundred (1%) MPs each.
Although MPs overwhelmingly believe the G7 holds significance in today’s geopolitical landscape, only one in six (15%) MPs believe it is the most important international organisation in achieving the UK’s foreign policy objectives. NATO is seen as the most important international organisation for achieving foreign policy objectives that the UK is a member of (35%).
Although Labour (37%) and Conservative (34%) MPs believe NATO is the most important international organisation, there remains a difference in opinion for other institutes. One in four (24%) Labour MPs believe that the UN holds the most importance, whilst one in four (23%) Conservative MPs believe it is The Commonwealth.
The World Trade Organisation (WTO) is seen as the least important among MPs, as only one in twenty (4%) selected it as the most important organisation regarding the UK’s foreign policy objectives.
MPs were also questioned on the importance of discussing different topics at the 2021 G7 Summit. The Covid-19 global recovery was seen as the most important topic to discuss amongst MPs (98%). This was closely followed by Trade (97%) and Global Security (97%).
Four in five (82%) MPs believe that Climate Change is an important topic to discuss between the G7 nations; however, MPs across the aisle do show differing opinions on how important a topic it is. Nine in ten (92%) Labours MPs believe climate change is a very important topic to discuss, with just four in ten (42%) Conservative MPs saying the same.
Arguably the largest news to come out of the 2021 G7 Summit was a global tech tax agreement, consisting of a global minimum tax rate of “at least” 15%. Four in five (80%) MPs believe this was an important topic to discuss; however, a large difference in opinion between parties can be seen once again. All (100%) Labour MPs questioned believe the global tech tax discussion was important, falling to two in three (65%) Conservative MPs who say the same.