Obama, Merkel agree on need to spur growth

United States President Barack Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel agreed on Saturday on the need for “concerted action” to spur global growth, the White House said after the leaders spoke by telephone.

The two leaders also agreed to continue working on a statement by the Middle East Quartet group that could provide a basis for a resumption of direct talks between Israel and the Palestinians, a White House statement said.

“The two leaders agreed on the importance of concerted action, including through the G20, to address current economic challenges and to spur growth and job creation in the global economy,” the statement said.

The statement did not specify what kind of action the leaders would recommend to spur growth.

Obama, enduring one of the roughest patches of his presidency, is preparing a speech on jobs and the deficit in September which supporters hope will contain measures to cut high unemployment and revive the recovery.

There is also concern in the US that the euro zone crisis could harm global economic growth and create more headwinds for the US recovery.

Confident
US central bank chief Ben Bernanke said on Friday he was confident European authorities had a good grip on their problems.

Financial stress “has been and continues to be a significant drag on the recovery” both in the US and Europe, he told an audience of central bankers in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.

“Bouts of sharp volatility and risk aversion in markets have recently re-emerged in reaction to concerns about both European sovereign debts and developments related to the US fiscal situation,” he said.

He also pushed political leaders in the US to take action to bolster growth by generating more jobs and stimulating the housing market.


Obama and Merkel discussed the Middle East — less than a month before the Palestinians were due to formally submit their request for statehood to UN chief Ban Ki-moon.

The move comes after direct peace talks with Israel foundered late last year over a dispute over Jewish settlement construction on occupied Palestinian land.

Israel was strongly opposed to such a move, saying negotiations were the only way to resolve the conflict and establish a Palestinian state — a position backed by Washington, which announced its intention to block the request.

The Middle East Quartet is made up of the European Union, Russia, the US and the UN. — AFP

These are unprecedented times, and the role of media to tell and record the story of South Africa as it develops is more important than ever. But it comes at a cost. Advertisers are cancelling campaigns, and our live events have come to an abrupt halt. Our income has been slashed.

The Mail & Guardian is a proud news publisher with roots stretching back 35 years. We’ve survived thanks to the support of our readers, we will need you to help us get through this.

To help us ensure another 35 future years of fiercely independent journalism, please subscribe.

Advertising

Ayo report: CFO acted in the PIC’s interests

A disciplinary inquiry has cleared Matshepo More of all charges, but she remains suspended

A lifeline for the homeless people in eThekwini

eThekwini plans to retain permanent and safe open spaces for people with nowhere to sleep

Judge trashes entire lockdown regime as constitutionally flawed

The high court ruling will delight gatvol South Africans but is unlikely to stand the test of time

The backlogs, denials and future of testing Covid-19

The National Health Laboratory Services finally admitted to a bottleneck last week, after denying there were any issues since April. According to the service, the backlog of 80 000 tests started in the first week of May
Advertising

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…

The best local and international journalism

handpicked and in your inbox every weekday