The leaders of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States have met in France at the G7 summit.

It is the 45th time the G7 has convened in one form or another and the tradition is to hold roundtable discussions, led by the host - in this case, France's President Emmanuel Macron - and for some sort of declaration or communique to be released at the end.

But in a sign of the times, Macron made a statement before the summit that there would be no joint declaration. An admission, of sorts, that trying to find global consensus in 2019 is a difficult business.

And so the focus shifts to the sideline meetings, the one-on-one discussions where leaders try to do their own deals.

US President Donald Trump and UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson were one example on Sunday.

But they didn't always seem to be on the same page, especially when it came to the US trade war with China, and fears of it becoming a global problem.

So with all the infighting, posturing and one-on-one deals, what purpose does this G7 serve?

Presenter: Kamahl Santamaria


Doug Bandow - Senior fellow at the Cato Institute

Theresa Fallon - Director of the Centre for Russia Europe Asia Studies

Einar Tangen - China political and economic analyst

Source: Al Jazeera News