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Archived - History of the Group of Seven

This Web page has been archived on the Web.

The origins of the G7 can be traced back to the informal meetings that occurred between leaders of major industrialized countries that began in 1975. These “fireside chats” offered leaders an opportunity to discuss global economic challenges together. 

At the 1986 G7 Leaders’ Summit in Tokyo, a process of regular meetings of Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States was instituted. Since then, the G7 has served to improve communication and cooperation on matters that fall under the mandate of Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors, including economic and financial growth and stability, inflation and currency developments. 
When crises arise, the G7 has played an important role in maintaining global macroeconomic stability. In the late 1980s, the Plaza and Louvre Accords helped ensure the alignment and stability of globally important exchange rates. 

At the height of the financial crisis in October 2008, the G7 issued a five-point action plan which stabilized financial markets. The work done by the Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors at the Washington meeting laid the groundwork for the action plan adopted by G20 Leaders in their subsequent summits.

Canada assumes the G7 chairmanship at a time of continued uncertainty in the global economy and change in the global economic governance structure. While the G20 has become the premier global economic forum, the G7 will continue to focus on areas where it can promote global economic growth and stability—from fiscal responsibility to cooperation in financial sector regulation.