Britain will hold the first in-person G7 summit for nearly two years, inviting the leaders of major developed economies to a Cornish village to discuss rebuilding from the pandemic and climate change. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been invited to attend the G7 summit, scheduled to be held from June 11-13, as a guest by UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

Johnson says he wants to use the UK’s presidency of the G7 to forge a consensus that the global economy must recover from the COVID-19 crisis in a pro-free trade and sustainable way. “Coronavirus is doubtless the most destructive force we have seen for generations and the greatest test of the modern world order we have experienced,” he said in a statement. “It is only right that we approach the challenge of building back better by uniting with a spirit of openness to create a better future.”

The G7 – which is made up of the UK, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the USA and the EU – is the only forum where the world’s most influential and open societies and advanced economies are brought together for close-knit discussions. “This year the UK has also invited leaders from Australia and South Korea to attend as guest countries to deepen the expertise and experience around the table. Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s ambition is to use the G7 to intensify cooperation between the world’s democratic and technologically advanced nations. Between them the 10 leaders represent over 60% of the people living in democracies around the world,” the statement said.

Highlighting the growing cooperation between India and the United Kingdom over the fight against the coronavirus, the statement read: “As ‘pharmacy of the world’, India already supplies more than 50% of the world’s vaccines, and the UK and India have worked closely together throughout the pandemic. Our Prime Ministers speak regularly and Prime Minister Johnson has said he will visit India ahead of the G7”.

Leaders and ministers from the seven nations — Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the United States — have met virtually in recent months. Johnson’s office said he would use the summit to promote a green recovery from the pandemic, encouraging G7 members to unite to “make the future fairer, greener and more prosperous”. Britain also takes over the presidency of the UN Security Council in February, and Johnson has signalled he is seeking to boost the UK’s international presence as it embarks on a new path post-Brexit.