On the regulatory side, this notion that somehow there are those who are pushing for regulation and those who are resisting regulation is belied by the facts. Tim Geithner, who’s sitting here today, went before Congress and proposed as aggressive a set of regulatory measures as any that have emerged among G20 members. That was before we showed up.
And in conversations that Gordon and I had with our teams, I think there’s great symmetry in our belief that even as we deal with the current crisis, we’ve got to make sure that we’re preventing future crises like this from happening again.
On the topic of emerging markets and making sure that they have the finances that they need to weather the storm, poor countries are getting help and they’re not being lost in the shuffle, there is complete concurrence.
So I know that when you’ve got a bunch of heads of state talking, it’s not visually that interesting — (laughter) — and it — you know, the communiquÃ©s are written in sort of dry language, and so there’s a great desire to inject some conflict and some drama into the occasion. But the truth of the matter is, is that I think there has been an extraordinary convergence and I’m absolutely confident that the United States, as — as a peer of these other countries, will help to lead us through this very difficult time.
PRIME MINISTER BROWN: Let me also add that I’m confident that President Sarkozy will not only be here for the first course of our dinner, but will still be sitting as we complete our dinner this evening.
And I think, as President Obama has said, look, never before has the world come together in this way to deal with an economic crisis. Any of the crises that we’ve seen since the second world war, you have not had this level of international cooperation. And never before have the world come together with so many countries represented from so many different continents to address this crisis. So we have China, we have India, we have Argentina, Brazil, we have South Africa, we have Russia, as well as Europe and America and Japan.
And we are within a few hours I think of agreeing a global plan for economic recovery and reform. And I think the significance of this is that we’re looking at every aspect. It is American leadership on reshaping the financial system, on recapitalizing the banks, on restructuring the banking system that will inform our discussions on the future of the financial system. So I praise President Obama for the work that has been done within only a few days of coming into office.
But we will also be discussing how we can help the emerging markets and the industrializing countries, how they can be protected against the financial storm that is facing them. We will not forget that we have obligations to the poorest countries in the world, as well.