G8 Leaders Want 'Strong Eurozone' With Greece
G8 leaders have expressed hope that debt-stricken Greece stays in the eurozone and vowed to "take all necessary steps" to try to combat the deepening economic turmoil in Europe.
In a statement of support for Europe, the eight leaders of the world's major economies said the global economic recovery shows promising signs but "significant headwinds persist".
"Against this backdrop, we commit to take all necessary steps to strengthen and reinvigorate our economies and combat financial stresses, recognising that the right measures are not the same for each of us," they said in a communique.
The leaders said they welcomed discussions in Europe to balance debt reduction with measures to support growth.
They stressed the importance of a "strong and cohesive" eurozone and reaffirmed their interest in Greece remaining a member while honouring its commitments to tackle its deficit.
"We all have an interest in the success of specific measures to strengthen the resilience of the eurozone and growth in Europe," they said.
"We support euro area leaders' resolve to address the strains in the eurozone in a credible and timely manner and in a manner that fosters confidence, stability and growth."
The leaders were meeting at US President Barack Obama's Camp David retreat to seek ways to restore confidence in global financial markets after the risk of Greece leaving the eurozone and Spain's banking problems sent world stocks to their lowest levels this year.
Mr Obama opened the summit promising to try to find ways to restore healthy growth and jobs, and address concerns in Europe.
"All of us are absolutely committed to making sure that both growth and stability, and fiscal consolidation, are part of an overall package in order to achieve the kind of prosperity for our citizens we all are looking for," he said.
After an early morning treadmill workout with Mr Obama at the gym, Prime Minister David Cameron said he detected a "growing sense of urgency that action needs to be taken" on the crisis.
"What is required is a sense of urgency and then clear actions for strong banks, strong deficit reduction plans, strong governance and strong contingency plans for whatever might happen," he said.
"On all those things I think there's a good sense of talks taking place and a good sense that action needs to follow."
Before welcoming the leaders to the summit, Mr Obama met the newly-inaugurated Francois Hollande at the White House and backed his new French counterpart's focus on economic growth.
Mr Hollande was sworn in earlier this week after coming to power on a promise of renegotiating the eurozone's fiscal pact to focus on stimulating economic growth rather than austerity.
Inevitably that brought tensions with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, the architect of the austerity measures that have pushed Greece to the brink of leaving the eurozone.
Mrs Merkel insisted Germany and France were in agreement on the need for both growth and austerity, saying: "Otherwise we would not have been able to agree on a statement."
However, the G8 statement noted "the right measures are not the same for each of us".
Other discussions focused on Iran and the on-going bloodshed in Syria.
G8 leaders sent a strong message to the Islamic Republic that tough energy sanctions would be firmly applied, vowing to ensure oil markets are adequately supplied and to prevent soaring crude prices.
The move came days before the next round of nuclear talks between global powers and Iran that will take place in Baghdad on Wednesday.
Mr Obama told the G8 leaders that Syrian President Bashar al Assad must give up power, and pointed to Yemen as a model of how political transition could work there.
Washington's patience has been wearing thin with Mr Assad, who said he would adhere to a UN-Arab League peace plan but has failed to bring violence to a full halt.
The summit marked the start of four days of intensive diplomacy - including a Nato meeting in Chicago - that will also focus on the winding down of the war in Afghanistan and food security.
what do you think?
So far theres been so many things happen that will "push growth". Yet nothing really has
Mr Cameron's economic policies and ill thought out rapid and damaging austerity measures,are looking rather forlorn as the rest of the world moves on.
Nice to see them all happy and smiling together, gives us confidence that everything is alright. Our wellbeing and future is safe in their hands
They look as if there is not a care in the world
And on this day not one single @#$% was given about prevent the world economy going belly up They just all got round the table and congratulated each other on their winning smiles
As you can see from the picture - they were actually playing poker!
And as is so typical of Obama, he speaks but says nothing
Always look on the bright side of life... In the grand scheme of things (life, the universe and everything), this little problem doesn't amount to a hill of beans! Throughout time, civilizations will rise and fall, but mankind will remain just a blip when compared to the history of the Earth. The Earth is like a grain of sand upon the beach of the galaxy and the galaxy but a drop in the vast ocean of the universe... (I'll stop there before I stray into quantum multiverse theory!) As far as we know, we only come this way once, so best make the most of it. We should do our utmost to enjoy the NOW... because it's all we've really got! "The clock is running, Make the most of today, Time waits for no man, Yesterday is history, Tomorrow is a mystery, Today is a gift... That's why it's called the present!"
Crikey, must be Sunday and the Karmacanic is giving us all a lesson in astrophysics as part of the sermon! (Still I like it - better than the Vicar's ones!) Another good old saying is that, "The clock of life is set when we are born and none of us knows how long it will run". On that solem note - I hope you all enjoy your Sundal lunch!
The Euro was a bad idea from start to finish! All it did was give even more power & cause expensive bureaucratic red tape from Brussels. Im all for a free market with trade, but the single currency was a step too far. All we seem to be doing is pouring in vast sums of money which we can ill afford to prop up the lame duck known as the euro I wouldn't be surprised if it does collapse then the powers that be will try & resurrect it again in say 10-20 years time saying that they knew where they went wrong the last time, & it wont happen again - til the next crisis!!!!.
The Euro is still stronger than Stirling and will ultimately pull through this crisis!
That's interesting Roger. Can you enlighten us further because that is a very interesting point!
Yes, I am afraid that there is too much talk and too little action. Merkell and Sarkozy met so often, yet nothing was agreed, nothing happened other than 'photo opportunities'. When Eurozone finance ministers met, they did nothing about the problems facing Greece, but instead produced new rules, blissfully forgetting that the original rules were ignored to get as many countries as possible to join the Eurozone. The Euro is an artificial currency and a a straitjacket. It is there because France and Germany want to lead a united Europe, while the Germans know that if the weaker ecomomies were to leave the Euro, those markets would be lost as German products would be too expensive.
Exactly! Good comment.
More hot air from politicians. The single currency does not and will not work. Unless you have one centralised fiscal policy for all the euro nations and one single European government. God forbid.
Yes! You must also have EU wide ownership of the means of production and distribution, the "harmonisation" of human and workers rights and laws. Not to mention central control of the populations, labour markets and law enforcement plus (of course!) central control of Banks and financial markets! Which is exactly where we have been heading with the last six major EU treaties! Thus binding EU member states ever closer to totalitarian, central EU control.
A 'United States' of Europe surely must also have a common language (more or less) for it to ever really work? How else do you get blocks of peoples, who hate eachother, to work for a common good? I suppose that 'Esperanto' was an early attempt, and recognition of the fact that language barriers foster conflict. Mainly French and German opposition killed it off from having any international standing it seems!
This is all because greedy corporations have taken manufacturing, trade, and other luxury goods away from European and American markets in search of maximizing profits. Leaving us with rubbish luxury goods, bad debt and no hope of returning. Don't all blame the banks all they were doing was aiding the circulation of currency. Point your fingers at yourselves for buying made in China goods!
You mean that we have a choice? Where do we go for (say) more British goods? (Other than our "Red Tractor" cheese, meats and eggs?!) Seriously, it was inevitable that under a capitalist economic model that is based on never ending economic growth and rising profits - business would become globalised. If we were all willing to become breadline workers (of any age!) again - we could attract back much more manufacturing business! Any takers?
Brian Robert Woolgar
Mike Roi Germany and Sweden kept their manufacturing industries and their workers are well paid.
How come we are still in the G8? Our economy is penniless against Brazil, China, India, USA, Japan, Germany, Russia, Israel, Sweden, Norway, Finland, France, Italy, Canada, Thailand, Singapore, Indonesia, Australia, New Zealand. In factagainst 90% of every country in the world. Because, Blair Brown, Cameron and Osbourne have now destroyed our economy
Wow is that a FACT? Where did you here that Johnathen?
They are gonna be very disappointed then.
If that meeting was of any importance Beckham would have been there
Nice one! Or his bitter looking wife to give them guidance on fashion and dieting!
rofl and you can call me old fashioned but what sort of so called role model decides to cover his entire body in tattoos
its all to do with greed too many people took too much out of the system by screwing as many people as they can along the way....that is the top and bottom of all of it, and leads us to a point of no return......i realise im being cynical but is it any wonder.
And this lot call themselves the leaders of the free world. God help us all.
I think the so-called leaders have deluded themselves.
Thumbs up if you pledge to holiday in Greece if they go back to the Drachma.
As usual, meaningless platitudes! The Euro is the root of this problem and those who created have much to anser for, as have those whom ignored the fact that many countries did not meet the standards for entry and pressed ahead as the plan was to use the Euro to create a strong European superstate over the heads and behind the backs of the electorate. Trouble is, even the Greeks won't face reality as they still want the Euro. A planned and orderly exit from the Euro is the only way forward for the Mediterranean states, Portugal and Ireland.
The Euro is not the cause of this 'crisis' The crisis in Greece is due to Greece not having a competitive economy, a corrupt bureaucracy, large scale tax evasion and the 4th highest arms expenditure in the world. All of this was in place before the Euro. In Spain the crisis has been caused by speculators risking billions on property which was financed by banks. Similar applies to Ireland. To blame the Euro is myopic. The collapse of General Motors and Lehman's etc in the USA was not blamed on the dollar. The Euro Zone is actually solvent and has a large trade surplus - Italy, France and Germany are all larger net exporters than the UK for example. Greece has the equivalent GDP of Hesse - a German state. Greece has to make a choice but to withdraw from the Euro would be far worse for Greece.