Officials declined to detail what, if any, new sanctions the administration, in concert with G7 allies, would announce against Russia, but they acknowledged officials “expect Ukraine to be at the very front of conversations, and expect to roll out a concrete set of proposals to increase the pressure on Russia to support Ukraine during the course of the summit,” while touting what they called already “unprecedented actions to our sanctions and export controls on Russia for its unjustified war against Ukraine,” from G7 nations.
“I think we’ll expect them to speak to, how can we take steps that further reduce Russia’s energy revenues? And how do we do so in a way that stabilizes global energy markets and lessens the disruptions and pressures that we’ve seen?” the official told reporters Wednesday. “Again, that all goes back to those principles articulated at the very start with Russia’s invasion: How do we maximize pain on Putin’s regime? How do we minimize spill backs back to the rest of the world? And I think that’s exactly how the discussion around energy markets and energy market challenges will get framed and discussed by leaders this weekend.”
Yet Russia and Ukraine are not the only topics up for discussion; China has emerged as a key issue for the two groups, which have not traditionally focused on Beijing in their summits.
“I think it is fair to say last year marked an important watershed with respect to the G7, speaking for the first time to China’s coercive economic practices,” a senior administration official told reporters. “We expect that that is going to be if anything bigger a topic of conversation.”
At NATO as well, leaders will include China for the first time in the final “strategic concept” document, particularly the long-term challenges China poses to European security. For the first time, the summit will include leaders from Asia, including from Australia, Japan, New Zealand and South Korea.
And at the G7, Biden will launch a global infrastructure partnership meant to advance low-and-middle income countries, another attempt to challenge China’s reach.