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Brown calls for united front to beat downturn

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Brown calls for united front to beat downturn


British Prime Minister Gordon Brown is calling on European nations to coordinate their economic rescue plans ahead of the G20 summit in London in April.

He is in Berlin today for a meeting with other European leaders, hosted by German Chancellor Angela Merkel, to hammer out a consensual approach to combat the global downturn. Brown has written to his European counterparts setting out the necessary action he thinks the international community has to take. At an agricultural fair this weekend, French President Nicolas Sarkozy said Europe should adopt bold measures to tackle the financial crisis. “France will push for an ambitious response,” he said. “I say very simply I will not associate myself with a position that does not respond in this way to this deep crisis.” But first some issues will have to be resolved. Sarkozy has rejected accusations that billions of euros in state loans to car manufacturers Renault and Peugeot-Citroen amount to protectionism. Britain has faced criticism from its European partners for bailing out its failing banks and for the fall in the value of the pound, giving British exporters an unfair advantage at a time of shrinking global demand.

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