S. Africa to promote African interests at G7 summit: Presidency


South African President Cyril Ramaphosa delivers his State of the Nation Address at parliament in Cape Town, South Africa, June 20, 2019. (Photo: Agencies)

CAPE TOWN, Aug. 23 (Xinhua) -- South Africa will utilize the upcoming G7 summit to promote the interests of the African Union (AU), the Presidency said on Friday.

South Africa will collaborate with other developing countries that have been invited to participate in the summit in order to advance Africa's developmental agenda, the Presidency said before President Cyril Ramaphosa leaves for Biarritz, France to attend the summit scheduled for August 24-26, following South Africa's invitation to attend as a key partner.

South Africa will also take advantage of the summit to promote its economic agenda and particularly to promote itself as a major investment destination, presidential spokesperson Khusela Diko said.

Earlier, the government said South Africa's participation in the 2019 G7 summit is guided by four strategic foreign policy pillars: advancing national interest to attain domestic objectives; enhancing the African agenda and promoting Africa's sustainable development support; influencing a reformed global multilateral architecture; and advancing the agenda of the South by strengthening South-South cooperation and North-South dialogue.

This year's summit will focus on fighting inequality, promoting gender equality, access to education and high-quality health services.

The G7 is a forum of the seven countries with the world's most industrialized and developed economies - France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United States, the United Kingdom, and Canada - whose government leaders meet annually to discuss important global economic, political, social and security issues.

Together, the G7 countries represent approximately 30 percent to 40 percent of global gross domestic product (GDP) and 10 percent of the world's population.

France has invited major economies with regional influence as well as strategic African partners and key representatives of civil society to attend the summit, with the aim of building a renewed partnership and form coalitions around projects and solutions to combat inequality more effectively.

The summit is expected to produce a range of declarations that will form the basis of action plans for addressing the challenges and embracing opportunities identified during the Biarritz deliberations.