News / USA

Obama to Push G20 to Tackle Long-Term Debt

Kent Klein

President Barack Obama goes to the G20 economic summit in France this week with hopes of helping Europe move toward a long-term solution for its debt crisis. The president also is trying to convince the other G20 countries that America’s economic and political problems can be overcome.

Europe's debt crisis, which recently led to riots in the streets of Athens, will lead the agenda at this week’s summit of the world's economic powers in the French resort city of Cannes.

Last week’s agreement by the European Union to enlarge its bailout fund and cut Greece’s debt was expected to ease some of the pressure on the G20 leaders. But Monday's decision by Greek leaders to hold a referendum on the bailout throws the deal into question.

Obama called the agreement an important first step, but said more work lies ahead.

“The key now is to make sure that it is implemented fully and decisively, and I have great confidence in the European leadership to make that happen,” said the president.

America’s economic and political problems may also come up at the G20. Stubborn high unemployment has stifled the US economic recovery. And partisan bickering has led to questions from other countries about Washington's ability to address its economic problems.

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney assured the G20 partners the president is making progress on these issues.

“So he carries with him to France the fact that we are pushing our Congress to act on these matters, and he comes as the leader of the largest economy in the world and a great friend and ally of a great many nations,” said Carney.

Another of Obama’s priorities in Cannes is to push for greater access to overseas markets for American exports.

“We have got to get into a posture where the U.S. is always going to be a big market, and we are going to welcome goods from all around the world, but we’ve also got to be selling goods around the world,” said Obama.

The president will continue to bring up the sensitive issue of the value of China’s currency, according to Matthias Matthijs, an assistant professor of international political economy at American University in Washington.

“So basically, the United States is the debtor country and thinks that the Chinese are exporting because of unfair trade practices, and then the Chinese think that the Americans basically print too much money and manipulate their economy that way,” said Matthijs.

Scheherazade Rehman, the director of George Washington University’s European Union Research Center, doubts that the president’s views on China’s currency will get much European support.

“They are so caught up in putting out their own fires that they cannot fathom that this is a good time to bring up a currency war with China," said Rehman. "From President Obama’s point of view, this is a good time, so he can show the American people that ‘Look, we are going to do whatever we can to keep jobs at home.’”

These and other issues will be covered in just two days. Obama and the other G20 leaders arrive in Cannes early Thursday and leave late Friday.

You May Like

Video Is West Doing Enough to Tackle Islamic State?

There is growing uncertainty over whether West’s response to ISIS is adequate More

China Crackdown on Dual Citizens Causes Concern

New policy encourages reporting people who obtain citizenship in another country, but retain Chinese citizenship; move spurs sharp debate More

Video Coalition to Fight Islamic State Could Reward Assad

Losing ground to Islamic State fighters, Syria's government says it is ready to cooperate with international community More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Is West Doing Enough to Tackle Islamic State?i
X
Henry Ridgwell
August 29, 2014 12:26 AM
U.S. President Barack Obama has ruled out sending ground troops to Iraq to fight militants of the so-called Islamic State, or ISIS, despite officials in Washington describing the extremist group as the biggest threat the United States has faced in years. Henry Ridgwell reports from London on the growing uncertainty over whether the West’s response to ISIS will be enough to defeat the terrorist threat.
Video

Video Is West Doing Enough to Tackle Islamic State?

U.S. President Barack Obama has ruled out sending ground troops to Iraq to fight militants of the so-called Islamic State, or ISIS, despite officials in Washington describing the extremist group as the biggest threat the United States has faced in years. Henry Ridgwell reports from London on the growing uncertainty over whether the West’s response to ISIS will be enough to defeat the terrorist threat.
Video

Video Pachyderms Play Polo to Raise Money for Elephants

Polo, the ancient team competition typically played on horseback, is known as the “sport of kings.” However, the royal version for one annual event in Thailand swaps the horse for the kingdom’s national symbol - the elephant. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman in Samut Prakan reports that the King’s Cup Elephant Polo tournament is all for a good cause.
Video

Video Coalition to Fight Islamic State Could Reward Assad

The United States along with European and Mideast allies are considering a broader assault against Islamic State fighters who have spread from Syria into Iraq and risk further destabilizing an already troubled region. But as VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports, confronting those militants could end up helping the embattled Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
Video

Video Made in America Socks Get Toehold in Online Fashion Market

Three young entrepreneurs are hoping to revolutionize the high-end sock industry by introducing all-American creations of their own. And they’re doing most of it the old-fashioned way. VOA’s Julie Taboh recently caught up with them to learn what goes into making their one-of-a-kind socks.
Video

Video Americans, Ex-Pats Send Relief Supplies to West Africa

Health organizations from around the world are sending supplies and specialists to the West African countries that are dealing with the worst Ebola outbreak in history. On a smaller scale, ordinary Americans and African expatriates living in the United States are doing the same. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
Video

Video America's Most Popular Artworks Displayed in Public Places

Public places in cities across America were turned into open-air art galleries in August. Pictures of the nation’s most popular artworks were displayed on billboards, bus shelters, subway platforms and more. The idea behind “Art Everywhere,” a collaborative campaign by five major museums is to allow more people to enjoy art and learn about the country’s culture and history. Faiza Elmasry has more.
Video

Video Chinese Doctors Use 3-D Spinal Implant

A Chinese boy suffering from a debilitating bone disease has become the first patient with a part of his spine created in a three-dimensional printer. Doctors say he will soon regain normal mobility. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Uneasy Calm Settles Over Israel, Gaza Strip

Israel and the Gaza Strip have been calm since a cease-fire set in Tuesday evening, ending seven weeks of hostilities. Hamas, which controls Gaza, declared victory. Israelis were more wart. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jerusalem.
Video

Video India’s Leprosy Battle Stymied by Continuing Stigma

Medical advancements in the treatment of leprosy have greatly diminished its impact around the world, largely eliminating the disease from most countries. India made great strides in combating leprosy, but still accounts for a majority of the world’s new cases each year, and the number of newly infected Indians is rising - more than 130,000 recorded last year. Doctors there say the problem has more to do with society than science. Shaikh Azizur Rahman reports from Kolkata.
Video

Video Scientists Unlock Mystery of Bird Flocks

How can flocks of birds, schools of fish or herds of antelope suddenly change direction -- all the individuals adjusting their movement in concert, at seemingly the same time? British researchers now have some insights into this behavior, which has puzzled scientists for a long time. VOA's George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid