Although Moon joined as a guest at the G7 summit, his attendance represents an increased level of South Korea’s world state. The G7 has served as a community of world leaders to set international norms and standards. South Korea is moving closer to the G7 leaders given its economic skills ranking 10th in the world and a considerable level of democratic advancement. The upcoming G7 summit will clarify how far South Korea has come on the world stage.
Last year, South Korea was expected to be part of an expanded form of the Group of Seven, argued then-US President Donald Trump. However, the spread of the coronavirus made a face-to-face meeting unavailable as some members objected to the membership of another candidate, Russia, after which related discussions lost momentum. The upcoming summit in Britain could rekindle some interest in a larger group of world leaders than the existing seven, putting South Korea’s diplomatic capabilities to the test.
It is highly likely that US President Joe Biden will make a sophisticated effort to build a front against China at the meeting where he makes his official multilateral diplomatic debut. China could be condemned for suppressing human rights, abusing diplomatic influence and engaging in unfair trade. The gist of the US-led Democracy Summit in the second half of this year and Britain’s proposed D10 Initiative is to strengthen the international coalition to protect democracy and human rights. If South Korea sits on the sidelines without adding a voice to its chants and backs down, intimidated by China’s warning not to be swept aside by a one-sided force, it might not be able to secure a seat in the within the international community.