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Biden to Join G-7 Leaders in Virtual Meeting to Discuss Pandemic Response

WASHINGTON—President Biden will participate in a virtual meeting of the Group of Seven industrialized nations on Friday, the White House said, joining a forum for leaders of member countries to discuss plans to defeat the coronavirus pandemic as death counts rise and the global economy remains sluggish.

“President Biden will focus on a global response to the Covid pandemic, including coordination on vaccine production, distribution, and supplies, as well as continued efforts to mobilize and cooperate against the threat of emerging infectious diseases by building country capacity and establishing health security financing,” the White House said Sunday.

Friday’s meeting will be the first G-7 gathering since April 2020. It will be hosted by British Prime Minister Boris Johnson. In addition to the U.S., the G-7 includes France, Japan, Germany, Italy, the U.K. and Canada.

The White House said Mr. Biden would also focus on the global economic recovery “including the importance of all industrialized countries maintaining economic support for the recovery and collective measures to build back better.…President Biden will also discuss the need to make investments to strengthen our collective competitiveness and the importance of updating global rules to tackle economic challenges such as those posed by China.”

Mr. Biden will also raise concerns about climate change, the White House said. The Feb. 19 virtual meeting comes ahead of a planned G-7 summit in June.