List of longest-serving G8 leaders
This is a list of the longest serving heads of government or heads of state in the G7. The G7 leaders are the Prime Minister of Canada, the President of France, the Chancellor of Germany, the Prime Minister of Italy, the Prime Minister of Japan, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, and the President of the United States.
Current longest serving G7 leader
Angela Merkel is the senior G7 leader, a title she kept from 2011 until 2012, regaining seniority in 2014 upon Russia's expulsion from the G8. Merkel has been in office since 22 November 2005.
After Merkel in seniority is the Prime Minister of Canada Stephen Harper, who has served as Prime Minister since 6 February 2006 and the President of the United States Barack Obama, who assumed office on 20 January 2009, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom David Cameron, who assumed office on 11 May 2010, the President of France François Hollande, who took office 15 May 2012, the Prime Minister of Japan Shinzō Abe, who took office on 26 December 2012, and the last is Prime Minister of Italy Matteo Renzi, who took office on 22 February 2014.
Chronology of longest serving G7 Leaders
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The following is a chronology of senior G7 leaders from the founding of the G6 (a precursor organization to the G8) to the present.
|Entered office as
Head of State
|Began time as
senior G8 leader
|Ended time as
senior G8 leader
|16 October 1964||15 November 1975||5 April 1976||Harold Wilson||Prime Minister of the United Kingdom|
|16 May 1974||5 April 1976||27 June 1976||Helmut Schmidt||Chancellor of West Germany|
|20 April 1968||27 June 1976||4 June 1979||Pierre Trudeau||Prime Minister of Canada|
|16 May 1974||4 June 1979||1 October 1982||Helmut Schmidt||Chancellor of West Germany|
|4 May 1979||1 October 1982||28 November 1990||Margaret Thatcher||Prime Minister of the United Kingdom|
|10 May 1981||28 November 1990||17 May 1995||François Mitterrand||President of France|
|1 October 1982||17 May 1995||27 October 1998||Helmut Kohl||Chancellor of Germany|
|10 July 1991||27 October 1998||31 December 1999||Boris Yeltsin||President of Russia|
|20 January 1993||31 December 1999||20 January 2001||Bill Clinton||President of the United States|
|4 November 1993||20 January 2001||12 December 2003||Jean Chrétien||Prime Minister of Canada|
|17 May 1995||12 December 2003||16 May 2007||Jacques Chirac||President of France|
|2 May 1997||16 May 2007||27 June 2007||Tony Blair||Prime Minister of the United Kingdom|
|31 December 1999||27 June 2007||7 May 2008||Vladimir Putin||President of Russia|
|20 January 2001||7 May 2008||20 January 2009||George W. Bush||President of the United States|
|10 May 1994||20 January 2009||16 November 2011||Silvio Berlusconi||Prime Minister of Italy|
|22 November 2005||16 November 2011||7 May 2012||Angela Merkel||Chancellor of Germany|
|31 December 1999||7 May 2012||24 March 2014||Vladimir Putin||President of Russia|
|22 November 2005||24 March 2014||Incumbent||Angela Merkel||Chancellor of Germany|
- The longest period anyone has been the senior G7 leader is the eight years, 59 days of Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Margaret Thatcher, who was Prime Minister for eleven years. Overall, the period of almost 3000 days that Thatcher spent as senior G8 leader is longer than the combined number of days spent by the leaders of any single other country as senior G8 leader.
- The shortest period any past G7 leader has been the senior G7 leader is the 42 days of Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Tony Blair in 2007.
- Despite the fact that Japan was a founding member of the G6 (which later became the G7, and then the G8), no Japanese Prime Minister has ever become the Senior G7 Leader. No Prime Minister of Japan has ever held office for more than five years, four months since the founding of the G6.
- Except for Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Harold Wilson, the first person to be Senior G7 Leader, no past Senior G7 Leader has held office for less than eight years.
- Canada did not join the organization until 1976 while Russia did not join until 1997. Therefore, Canadian leaders prior to 1976 and Russian leaders before 1997 are not included in this list.
- Wilson first served as Prime Minister from 16 October 1964 to 19 June 1970, and then again from 4 March 1974 to 5 April 1976.
- Canada joined the organization on this date. Trudeau had been in office longer than any of the other leaders and so took the title of senior G8 leader from Schmidt.
- Berlusconi first served as Prime Minister from 10 May 1994 to 17 January 1995, then again from 11 June 2001 to 17 May 2006, and then again from 8 May 2008 to 16 November 2011. Berlusconi currently holds the record of G8 Summit hosting, having hosted it in Italy three times.
- Putin first served as President of Russia from 1999 to 2008.