President von der Leyen at G7 Session I – "Towards an International Community characterised by Cooperation, not Division and Confrontation / Global Economy, Digital, Trade"

Quotes from President von der Leyen at the first session of the G7 Summit, "Towards an International Community characterised by Cooperation, not Division and Confrontation / Global Economy, Digital, Trade" 

Despite all geopolitical difficulties, the clean energy transition is accelerating. It offers real growth opportunities.

We will focus on strengthening the clean manufacturing system in Europe. We are also shifting our focus.

When I started the European Green Deal in 2019, the priority was the fast deployment of renewables.

Now we have to also focus on the ‘sourcing' of renewables: how to get to sufficient manufacturing capacity? How to ensure access to technology – and even more so – to critical raw materials?

The G7 and many others want to tap into the huge opportunities that come with the net-zero transition. We have to find the best way forward for both: the climate and our economies, that are intertwined.

Therefore we should always keep in mind the old saying: ‘if you want to go fast, go alone; if you want to go far, go together'. This clean-tech race is an opportunity to go faster and further, together.

Now that the G7 are in this race together, our competition should create additional manufacturing capacity and not come at each other's expense.

I see four fields of closer cooperation:

First, we need to jointly assess what is needed when it comes to global clean manufacturing capacity to reach our ambitious climate targets. We should even consider setting targets for the build up of such capacities.

Second, we need to provide a clear, predictable business environment to our clean tech industries. The starting point is transparency among the G7 how we support manufacturing.

Third, where we have specific concerns regarding fair competition, we should find ways to address them. Europe and the US have already achieved a number of solutions, some of this work is still ongoing, as we negotiate a Critical Minerals Agreement and engage in a Clean Energy Incentives Dialogue. And I hope our bilateral EU-US discussion on sustainable steel and aluminium can also become a global arrangement

Fourth, we should create new forms of clean tech cooperation. We need more green alliances among ourselves but also with other trusted partners. I hope we can take forward a Critical Raw Materials Club at this G7 meeting.

On Artificial intelligence

Artificial Intelligence's potential benefits for citizens and the economy are great.

At the same time, we need to agree to guardrails to develop AI in the EU, reflecting our democratic values.

We want AI systems to be accurate, reliable, safe and non-discriminatory, regardless of their origin.