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British coalition stresses need for cuts

British coalition stresses need for cuts
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British Prime Minister David Cameron’s new coalition cabinet have met for the first time amid a pressing need to fix the country’s rocky public finances.

The UK’s deficit for the last fiscal year was a record 163 billion pounds, some 12 percent of GDP.

The Conservatives and their junior partners, the Liberal Democrats, have agreed to put their differences aside in the name of calming nervy investors.

In a speech in London, the new British premier said his new coalition was “a five year government” in a nod to the stability sought by the markets.

“I think we have an incredible opportunity to make long-term decisions for the good of our economy, for the good of our country,” Cameron said.

But curing the UK’s economic ills will be a tough task.

The Paris-based OECD predicts sluggish growth of 1.1 percent this year, followed by 2.2 percent in 2011.