Setting the tone for his trip to the G-20 summit in France next week, President Obama said Friday the most important thing world leaders can do to boost the global economy is "to get the U.S. economy growing faster."
The summit, which comes at a time of financial turmoil in Europe and sluggish growth in the United States, will include the leaders of the leading industrial countries as well as rising developing powers such as China, India and Brazil.
"As the world's largest economy, the U.S. will continue to lead," Mr. Obama wrote in an op-ed in the Financial Times. "That's why my highest priority is putting Americans back to work. It's why I've proposed the American Jobs Act, which independent economists have said would create nearly 2 million jobs, boost demand and increase U.S. economic growth."
The G-20 leaders will gather in Cannes, France on Thursday and Friday. As they prepare to meet, the heads of the European Union reached agreement this week on a bailout plan for Greece and on a program to increase money in an emergency fund to aid other nations struggling with heavy debt loads.
"The crisis in Europe must be resolved as quickly as possible," Mr. Obama said. "This week, our European allies made important progress on a strategy to restore confidence in European financial markets, laying a critical foundation on which to build."
He added, "Given the scope of the challenge and the threat to the global economy, it is important for all of us that this strategy be implemented successfully — including building a credible firewall that prevents the crisis from spreading, strengthening European banks, charting a sustainable path for Greece and tackling the structural issues at the heart of the current crisis."
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