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French police guard street access at the Zone 1 security perimeter near the Deauville International Center, venue of the upcoming G8 Summit. - 

STEVE CHIOTAKIS: The leaders of eight of the world's wealthiest nations are gathering in France to talk about the big issues facing the planet. President Obama just landed there this morning.

The BBC's Matt Cole is with us now from the conference in Deauville. Good morning Matt!

MATT COLE: Good morning.

CHIOTAKIS: This is going to be a pretty packed two days. What are expected to be the highlights there?

COLE: Absolutely. There's an awful lot on the agenda -- issues to do with emerging democracies in North Africa, the ongoing conflict in Libya to discuss. There'll also be discussions obviously about nuclear safety in the world following the nuclear disaster after the tsunami in Japan. And they'll also be looking at the Internet too and questions about whether its time perhaps to regulate it. So a lot of discussions to be had and very little time to do it really.

CHIOTAKIS: You know I'm curious as to whether the G8 is even really relevant anymore in the era of emerging markets.

COLE: Well, indeed. I mean economically speaking the G8, which started out in the mid-70s the G6 was set up to talk about economic issues. But really the G20 -- that much larger body including the new counties like Brazil and India with their growing markets -- that's really taken over the G20, the economic aspect. Anything that the G8 decides -- any of the grand statements and pledges that come out of the end of it -- they are just that. There's no enforcement of them. So they might pledge lots of money to give to the emerging democracies in North Africa, but there's not guarantee they'll ever do it.

CHIOTAKIS: All right, the BBC's Matt Cole in Deauville. Matt thank you.

COLE: Thank you very much indeed.