According to the head of the Munich Security Conference, Wolfgang Ischinger the so-called "Group of 7" cannot possibly solve the world's major problems without Russia. With the G7 summit slated to start on May 26 in Ise-Shima National Park in Japan, most experts agree Russia returning to the group under current circumstances is unlikely though.
While a re-inclusion of Russia to reform the G8 would be a devasting defeat for those nations' efforts to penalize the Putin government over the Ukraine conflict, the absolute necessity of Russia's involvement is clear. This, according to Mr. Ischinger, the other members cannot do without the world's biggest nation. Ironically, Russian Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov has suggested that the G8 is a bit of Russian history he sees no reason for repeating. Ischinger told reporters:
"The G7 is not capable of dealing with major international crises alone. Neither the crisis in Ukraine, nor the conflict in Syria can be resolved without Russia's participation. Never say never. The door for Russia to return to this association should be kept open for a long time."
Many key analysts now contend, that the G7 in Japan should be the last summit held in this format. Without Russia as a core in these discussions, given the nation's growing importance for the world economy, continuing seems frivolous and ill advised. The pro-western bias the G7 symbolizes, really has no place in a world summit of any kind. With "conditions" in place for G7 members to reconsider Russia's inclusion, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said that Moscow considered any of such conditions inappropriate.
The G7 was formally expanded to the G8 in 1998, when Russia officially joined the club. In 2014, against the background of the crisis in Ukraine, representatives of the club decided not to participate in the G8 summit in Sochi and gathered in Brussels instead. In 2014, Russia was chairing the Group of Eight.
G7 members Germany, the United States, Canada, Japan, France, UK, Italy have stressed they will not sit back down in negotiations with Russia until the Crimea stategy is reversed. Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary Ambassador of the Russian Federation, former UN Deputy Secretary General, Chairman of the Russian Public Council for International Cooperation and Public Diplomacy, Sergei Ordzhonikidze, told Pravda.Ru:
"The G7 excluded Russia from the club, and now let them solve their problems themselves. We will see how they can have it done. They did not even explain the reasons behind their decision, having only referred to the results of the referendum in the Crimea. If they do not want to, this is not such a big deal. We used to strive for our participation in the Group of Eight. Yet, one should keep in mind the fact that this body does not make decisions - this is a consultative agency. It If they want to work without Russia - let them work without Russia."
News today the talks in Japan already revolve around western dialogue, lend credibility to those pointing out the group's sagging validity. This morning Al Jazeera reported on the G7 focus on western strategic aims. According to the news network:
"(The) summit topics include terrorism, cybersecurity and maritime security, including China's assertiveness in the East and South China Seas, where the country has territorial disputes with Japan and several Southeast Asian nations."
Given its current member list and format, it seems fair to say the G7 has become a kind of NATO for economics. The only seeming usefulness of the summit now would seem to be for waging a kind of economic strategy warfare. While the "club" does currently represent over 60% of net global wealth, this figure is certain to be reduced if Russia, China and the other BRICs form up a monetary union outside the IMF etc. Regime change worldwide, particularly in Latin America, hint at this certainty being a crisis point. More on this later, but for now it seems Russia is going her own way without the rest of these partners.