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Starting on the Road to the G7 Apulia Summit

Chiara Oldani, professor of monetary economics, University of Viterbo 'La Tuscia'
January 28, 2024

On 1 January 2024, the Italian presidency of the G7 began. This international political assembly consists of the some of the countries with the most government debt as a percentage of gross domestic product: Japan with 257%, Italy with 159%, the United States with 133%, the United Kingdom with 109%, France with 116%, Canada with 110% and Germany with 73%. The G7, which started in 1975 and now includes the European Union, is an opportunity to exercise global political leadership, confirm historic alliances and consolidate new ones.

The logo of the 2024 Italian presidency is an elegant synthesis of global and local messages. The centuries-old olive tree is a symbol of Apulia and Italian agriculture, with seven olive branches representing the seven countries, against a blue horizon that represents the Mediterranean sea, the largest cemetery in Europe as Pope Francis has described it.

As Italy's last G7 presidency in 2017, this year the Italian government is organizing a busy agenda of meetings at the ministerial level, to deal with the focal themes of the seven members plus the EU, including agriculture, industry and the digital economy, the environment, justice, education and the labour market.

In June 2024, G7 leaders will meet in the Apulia region to discuss topics defined by the Italian presidency: economic and political issues, and also migration and artificial intelligence. Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni released a video introducing her presidency on the G7 social media channels to explain the summit's objectives and priorities.

Leaders of other countries will also take part in the summit, invited by Italy. They will certainly be the countries directly involved in the key issues. It is perhaps not likely to see Meloni's ally Albanian prime minister Edi Rama, at the table with Joe Biden, Emmanuel Macron and Olaf Scholz, but there will be at least one leader from Africa, whose countries are directly involved in the migration to Europe.

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Chiara Oldani is a professor of monetary economics at the University of Viterbo 'La Tuscia' and the director of the Rome office of the G7 and G20 Research Groups. Her research focuses on financial innovation and stability.

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