G8 – Facts and Figures

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  • The first G6 meeing in 1975 was preceded by several less formal meetings. These first summits’ prelude was the oil crisis and economic recession of the early 70s. Big industrial countries first came together to discuss solutions to those.
  • The wealth of the 8 wealthiest countries of the world are taken into account by their net wealth instead of GDPs. If we check recent figures of several economic indicators we find that the G8 doesn’t represent the wealthiest nations adequatly anymore.


  • Still notable that the summed GDPs of the G8 countries add up to about 50 percent of global economy.
  • There was a short lived attempt to involve new emerging markets like Brazil, China, India, Mexico, South Africa to the summit. The G8+5 model did not seem to work though. As some of these countries perform better in many economic areas than the ones that nobly invited them, they would have prefered full membership which was never granted.
  • There is an intent to make G20 the main platform for financial and economic discussions, and leave G8 for politics.
  • The G8 is not a formal international organization, like the UN or the EU, doesn’t have a charter or a secretariat. All decisions are made by its members on the annual summits of heads of states/governments or the ministerial meetings.
  • There are not and never were any formal criterias of becoming a member, yet running a democratic political system is one common feature, and was said to be a standard for the G7. That is mainly why the membership of Russia was delayed for so long, and even these days raises so many questions.

Learn more about the G8 clicking here.

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