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Bush to Push Free Trade at Upcoming Economic Summit  

U.S. President George Bush talked Saturday about the agenda for next month's international economic summit at the White House. VOA's Kent Klein reports from Washington.

President Bush devoted his weekly radio address to previewing his meeting with other leaders of the so-called Group of 20 nations on the global economic crisis.

"During the summit we will discuss the causes of the problems in our financial systems, review the progress being made to address the current crisis, and begin developing principles of reform for regulatory bodies in institutions related to our financial sectors," he said.

Earlier in the week, Mr. Bush invited leaders of wealthy nations and the heads of major developing economies to the White House on November 15, to focus on the global financial crisis. Administration officials see the summit as the first in a series of meetings on the global economy. The president said Saturday the meeting will give world leaders a chance to sit in one room and discuss the situation.

"While the specific solutions pursued by every country may not be the same, agreeing on a common set of principles will be an essential step towards preventing similar crises in the future," he said.

The summit will include the leading industrialized nations, plus emerging economies such as Brazil, India, China and South Africa. Mr. Bush said he will push hard for the principles of free trade.

"Open market policies have lifted standards of living and helped millions of people around the world escape the grip of poverty," he said. "These policies have shown themselves time and time again to be the surest path to creating jobs, increasing commerce and fostering progress. And this moment of global economic uncertainty would be precisely the wrong time to reject such proven methods for creating prosperity and hope."

White House Press Secretary Dana Perino said earlier in the week both presidential candidates, John McCain and Barack Obama, have been informed about plans for the initial summit. She said there was no decision on whether the winner of the November 4 election will attend.