U.S. Treasury secretary urges strong response to curb economic recession
U.S. Treasury Secretary Geithner said governments had to act strongly to deal with the worst global economic recession in decades while respecting free trade commitments, Xinhua reported.
"We are confronted with a broader and deeper slowdown than has been experienced in decades," he said in a statement after a meeting with his counterparts from the Group of Seven industrialized powers in Rome.
In the statement, Geithner also said "all countries need to sustain a commitment to open trade and investment policies which are essential to economic growth and prosperity."
So far, the U.S. Congress has approved a 787 billion U.S. dollars economic stimulus package, which would require public infrastructure projects use U.S. steel and goods under a "Buy America" clause that brings concerns about the return of trade protectionism.
At the G7 finance ministerial meeting in Rome on Friday and Saturday, ministers and central bank governors agreed that an open system of global trade and investment "is indispensable for global prosperity."
"The G7 remains committed to avoiding protectionist measures, which would only exacerbate the downturn, to refraining from raising new barriers and to working toward a quick and ambitious conclusion of the Doha round (of the WTO talks)," a final communique issue at the end of the Rome meeting said.