Sat, September 26, 2009
World > International Organizations > President Hu attends G20, UN summits

G20 summit in Pittsburgh forges new framework for growth: Obama

2009-09-26 07:23:29 GMT2009-09-26 15:23:29 (Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

U.S. President Barack Obama speaks at a news conference after the conclusion of the G20 Summit in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, the U.S., Sept. 25, 2009. Obama on Friday said the G20 had taken significant steps to help the global economy transition to sustained growth. (Xinhua/Zhang Yan)

PITTSBURGH, United States, Sept. 25 (Xinhua) -- U.S. President Barack Obama said Friday the freshly concluded Group of 20 summit had forged a new framework for strong, sustainable and balanced growth of the world economy.

"The economic recovery efforts taken by the Group of 20 members have saved the world economy from the brink of collapse," the president said at a news conference after the conclusion of the G20 summit, which was held here Sept. 24-25.

The London Summit in April, he said, marked a "turning point in the G20's effort to prevent economic catastrophe."

With "several significant steps" taken by G20 members since then, "we brought the global economy back from the brink. We laid the groundwork today for long-term prosperity, as well," he said.

"Because of the bold and coordinated action that we took, millions of jobs have been saved or created; the decline in output has been stopped; financial markets have come back to life; and we stopped the crisis from spreading further to the developing world."

To avoid another crisis, he said G20 members agreed at the summit to forge "a new framework for strong, sustainable and balanced growth".

The president categorized achievements of the summit in four areas.

"First, we agreed to sustain our recovery plans until growth is restored, and a new framework for prosperity is in place."

"Our coordinated stimulus plans played an indispensable role in averting catastrophe. Now, we must make sure that when growth returns, jobs do, too. That's why we will continue our stimulus efforts until our people are back to work, and phase them out when our recovery is strong."

Second, "we agreed to take concrete steps to move forward with tough, new financial regulations so that crises like this can never happen again."

Reform efforts agreed at the summit include bringing more transparency to the derivatives market, strengthening national capital standards, and tieing executive pay to long-term performance.

Third, the participants agreed to "phase out subsidies for fossil fuels so that we can transition to a 21st century energy economy," an effort the president said would ultimately phase out nearly 300 billion U.S. dollars in global subsidies and help global economic transformation.

Finally, the participants agreed to "reform our system of global economic cooperation and governance."

"To make our institutions reflect the reality of our times, we will shift more responsibility to emerging economies within the International Monetary Fund, and give them a greater voice," Obama said.

Efforts in this area also included the establishment of a new World Bank Trust Fund to support investments in food security and financing for clean and affordable energy, he said.

The president also noted that, in the 21st century, the nations of the world shared mutual interests.

"That's why I've called for a new era of engagement that yields real results for our people -- an era when nations live up to their responsibilities, and act on behalf of our shared security and prosperity," he said.

"And that's exactly the kind of strong cooperation that we forged here in Pittsburgh, and earlier this week in New York," Obama said, referring to a series of UN summits held earlier this week.

The president acknowledged there was much more work to be done, but he believed the G20 leaders left the summit "more confident and more united" in the common effort of advancing security and prosperity in the world.

The G20 summit concluded here on Friday with the adoption of a 23-page leaders' statement pledging future efforts to strengthen the financial system and expedite world economic recovery.

Observers said the main achievement of the global event was the institutionalization of the G20 as the new platform of global economic governance.

The G20 leaders also agreed to keep their stimulus activities going until their economies recover.

They also agreed to tighten supervision of the financial community.

Although G20 leaders agreed the summit was a success, some of them said it didn't really address climate change.

Formally established in 1999 to bring together major industrialized and developing economies to discuss key issues concerning the global economy, the G20 group consists of Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Britain, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, Turkey, the United States and the European Union.

The group, which represents 85 percent of the world economy and two thirds of the global population, was meeting here for its third summit after previous meetings in Washington last November and London this April.

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