2017 G20 Hamburg summit

2017 G20 Hamburg summit
G20 2017 logo.svg
Host country Germany
Date 7–8 July 2017[1]
Venue(s) Hamburg Messe
Cities Hamburg, Germany
Participants G20 members
Guest inviteesGuineaNetherlandsNorwaySenegalSingaporeSpainSwitzerlandand Vietnam
Follows 2016 G20 Hangzhou summit
Precedes 2018 G20 Buenos Aires summit

The 2017 G20 Hamburg summit was the twelfth meeting of the Group of Twenty (G20), which was held on 7–8 July 2017, at Hamburg Messe, in the city of HamburgGermany.


G20 leaders group photo during the summit.

U.S. President Donald Trump, Russian President Vladimir PutinRex Tillerson, and Sergey Lavrov at the G20 Hamburg summit, 7 July 2017

The G20 Summit working lunch, 7 July 2017

Apart from the recurring themes relating to global economic growthinternational trade and financial market regulation,[2] the G20 Hamburg summit was expected to focus on the following “issues of global significance[2][3]: Migration, digitisation, occupation, health, Women’s Economic Empowerment and development aid.[4]

On 7 July terrorism, free trade and the United States’ withdrawal from the Paris Agreement were on the agenda, on July 8 Africa was supposed to be a topic.[5]


The 30-page summary paper stayed vague in many sections[6]. The communique of the 20 participants itself was seen as a success.[7] The resolutions are not legally binding.[8] Many additional documents were agreed upon, barely noticed by the public.(Annex in Weblink-PDF)

Wolfgang Schäuble, German Federal Minister of Finance, insisted on the interconnected nature of many issues facing G20 nations and the need to reach effective, cross-cutting policy measures: “Globalization has lifted hundreds of millions out of poverty, but there is also a growing rise in frustration in some quarters […] development, [national] security and migration are all interlinked”[3]


The disagreement in steel production and trade remained. The USA have accused steel producers in China and Europe of dumping and have been threatening with antidumping duty. The G20 demanded a report of overcapacities by November 2017.[9]

Sustainable development[edit]

There was no consensus with the USA regarding climate protection: a dissent with communalities in the deployment of renewable energy was formulated. The other 19 participants agreed to stick with the Paris agreement, to view it as irreversible and to swiftly put it into practice. After the summit finished, the Turkish president, Erdoğan said his country would not ratify the Paris agreement; Turkey was no industrialized nation but a developing country like other neighboring countries of the region and that François Hollande as then President had assured international assistance funds. President Macron has now invited members for further negotiations at another climate summit in Paris on 12 December.[10][11]In spite of the United States’ dissent, the German presidency wanted to make the most of the “renewed public policy interest for environmental sustainability, gender equity and social inclusiveness, in the spirit of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)” – notably by promoting renewable energy and further fossil fuel divestment in all nations.[3]

More inclusive growth[edit]

The G20 final communique placed a new emphasis on the need for trade deals to be reciprocal and non-discriminatory towards developing countries, reducing the previous emphasis on the primacy of liberalization and the promotion of free market economics across the board.[12]

Indian-Norwegian cooperation[edit]

India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi invited Norwegian pension funds to invest in his country’s National Infrastructure Investment platform as he met Norway’s Prime Minister Erna Solberg, who, in a gesture symbolising renewed cooperation towards the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals, offered him a round leather ball embroidered with the initials ‘SDGs’[13]

Women’s Economic Empowerment[edit]

The World Bank Group and the White House, represented by First Daughter Ivanka Trump, confirmed they would soon roll out a new fund that aims to help female entrepreneurs access capital, financing and managerial support in the developing world. World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim said the Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative fund had so far raised $325 million from various governments, and that he hoped to leverage that into a multibillion-dollar investment framework. [14]President Trump lent his personal support by pledging $50 million from the United States to jump-start the fund: “by investing in women around the world, we’re investing in families, we’re investing in prosperity and we’re investing in peace”. [15]

European migrant crisis, refugees[edit]

Counter-terrorism and national security[edit]

Leaders having chat at the photo-session

All agreed to continue regulating financial markets and to combat financing terrorism and tax evasion. Trade was intensely discussed and participants agreed to keep markets open and combat protectionism and unfair trade practises. The USA took a special stand as Trump supports protectionism. Participants agreed to a G20-Africa-Partnership and passed a special paper about the relationsships to the African nations.[11] In a joint statement, G20 leaders vowed to to take steps to prevent the internet from being used to spread propaganda. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modiindirectly targeted Pakistan (which is not a member of G20) by naming terrorist organisations that operate from its soil and saying that the groups all share the same ideology and purpose – of spreading hate and killing people. Indonesian President Joko Widodo urged member states to unite to fight against terrorism and emphasized on preventive as well as de-radicalization programs.[16]

Trump and Putin “discussed forming an impenetrable cybersecurity unit so that election hacking, and many other negative things, will be guarded and safe.” Trump later said he does not think this will happen.[17]

Trump and Putin reached a partial ceasefire agreement in Southwest Syria, starting Sunday, 10 July 12 o´clock local time the representatives of the two nuclear powers talked with each other.[18][19] German Chancellor Angela Merkel told reporters at her closing press conference of the G20 summit: “I was delighted that it was on the margins of G20 that the first meeting between Trump and Putin took place. It’s always better to talk one to the other, not one about the other. I was gratified to hear that they talked at a great length.”[20][21] The two had met in person there for the first time.[22]


List of leaders who took part in the 2017 G20 Hamburg summit:

Permanent guests[edit]

Brazil incertitude[edit]

Brazilian President Michel Temer initially cancelled his trip to Hamburg without giving any reasons,[32] facing corruption charges by General Prosecutor Rodrigo Janot, who has accused him of accepting bribes from meat company JBS S.A..[33]
On 4 July Temer reversed his decision and announced to attend.[34]

Saudi Arabia replacement[edit]

King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud cancelled his plan to participate at the summit and sent State Minister Ibrahim Abdulaziz Al-Assaf instead. No official reason was provided.[35]

International organizations[edit]


Security zones with limited access, and a significantly larger presence of Hamburg police assisted by police from other forces, were in place from 5 to 8 July;[38] further reinforcements from across the country were deployed as protests developed. Forty-five water cannons were available, and a no-fly zone was in place over portions of the city. [39]


Peaceful demonstration in boats, Binnenalster in Hamburg near town hall (2 July)

A burnt BMW car after the first night of riots.

In the weeks prior to the summit, sporadic car fires in remote places, such as the neighborhood of Blankenese, occurred regularly in the city.[40] On the night of 18 June 2017, unidentified individuals in BerlinHamburgCologneDortmundLeipzig, and Bad Bevensen caused a total of 13 arson attacks on tracks of the German railways.[41] A security expert was quoted by the German press agency DPA as saying that a connection to left-wing extremism related to the upcoming G20 Summit was “conceivable”.[42] According to a German interior ministry spokesman, cable fires had been caused by “unconventional explosive and incendiary devices”. In spite of high temperatures (30C, 86F) on 18 June, police discounted the possibility that the fires had been caused by hot weather.[43]

On 19 June, a group called “Shutdown G20 – Hamburg vom Netz nehmen!” claimed responsibility for the attacks in an internet post.[44]

On 2 July, Greenpeace activists forced a bulk freighter loaded with charcoal from Murmansk arriving in the city to stop. The police intervened and the vessel was allowed to pass through.[45]

During the G20 week a large variety of over 25 registered protest actions and marches were planned to take place in the city of Hamburg.[46][47] They included an alternative Global Solidarity Summit from 5 to 6 July [48] and a peaceful dance-protest-march Lieber tanz ich als g20 with between 11,000 and 20,000 people attending on 5 July. [49]

Around one thousand performance artists called 1000 Gestalten covered themselves in grey pigment and slowly walked through the streets like zombies. This performance was done to draw awareness of political apathy. After walking, they all removed their grey clothes. Underneath were colourful clothes that symbolized becoming engaged and awake.[50][51]

On 6 July, protests turned violent when over 160 police were injured in clashes with protestors and more than 75 people were arrested. As protestors attempted to storm into the “red zone” where the summit took place they were dispersed with water cannon. Some protestors stated their goal was to block the attendees route to the summit venue; US First Lady Melania Trump was not allowed to attend a harbor cruise.[52]

On 7 July rioters set dozens of parked cars on fire.[53] Several shops were destroyed and looted during the 7 July night-time riots in the Schanzenviertel area.[54] Masked rioters and militants from the “black bloc” went uncontrolled for a period of three hours, prompting the deployment of special armed police forces to end the violence.[55]

On 8 July 76,000 people attended the largest peaceful protest march “Solidarity without Borders”,[56] organized by an alliance of 174 groups and organizations.[57]

On early Sunday morning, July 9, riots continued in the Schanzenviertel though the G20 leaders had already departed; 144 rioters were arrested.[58]

In total, more than 15,000 police were deployed from across the country, while 100,000 protesters attended.[59]

Local residents believed that authorities made a mistake by having the summit in a densely populated area.[54] Police arrested 186 people overall: 132 Germans, 8 French, 7 Italians, 5 Swiss and citizens of Russia and Spain. An additional 225 people were taken into temporary custody.[60]


On the eve of the G20 summit in Hamburg, China’s most famous political prisoner, democracy activist and Nobel laureate Liu Xiaobo, had been given medical parole after being diagnosed with terminal liver cancer.[61]

Turkey arrested 12 people in Istanbul on the eve of the G20 summit in Hamburg in July 2017 during the “digital security and information management workshop”. They included Idil Eser, the head of Amnesty International Turkey. Activists detained included Ilknur Üstün of the Women’s Coalition, lawyer Günal Kursun and Veli Acu of the Human Rights Agenda Association.[62]