US, Britain both seeking sustainable growth: Obama

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Britain and the United States are both aiming for long-term sustainable growth despite different responses to the economic crisis, US President Barack Obama said Saturday.

"There have been differentiated responses between the two countries because of our different positions, but we're aiming at the same direction: long-term sustainable growth," Obama said.

He was speaking at his first meeting with British Prime Minister David Cameron, who took office last month at the head of a coalition government.

"As we go into the G20, I think we can explain that we're aiming at the same path, which is world growth and stability," Cameron said.

"But it means those countries that have big deficit problems like ours have to take action in order to keep that level of confidence in the economy, which is absolutely vital to growth."

The meeting came between the G8 and G20 summits in Toronto, which is set to be dominated by concerns over how to secure the global economic recovery.

European countries say cutbacks in spending are needed now amid worries about the health of the eurozone, fueled by huge public debts in Greece and Spain.

Cameron's government unveiled an emergency budget this week featuring the heaviest cuts for decades in a bid to rein in a record deficit of 154.7 billion pounds (188 billion euros, 230 billion dollars) in the 2009-10 financial year.

But Washington worries the global recovery may be derailed if government stimulus is withdrawn too soon.

© 2010 AFP

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