March 23, 2009 / 7:02 PM / 8 years ago

UPDATE 1-French PM warns against public debt bubble

(Adds quotes, clarifies context)

WASHINGTON, March 23 (Reuters) - France has already committed significant resources to stimulate its economy and should avoid creating a bubble of public debt, Prime Minister Francois Fillon said on Monday during a visit to Washington.

Fillon was speaking at a time when European governments have been resisting calls for additional stimulus measures to match the scale of U.S. commitments.

“Compared with the needs and means of the country, the French plan is very large. I am attentive to public finances. We should not create a bubble of public debt,” Fillon said in a speech at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.

He stressed that given the dire economic circumstances, the forthcoming meeting of G20 industrial and developing nations had “a duty” to produce concrete results.

Fillon said the G20, which will meet on April 2 in London, should confront four key issues: reform of financial regulation, support for growth, the rescue of banks and support for the most stricken countries.

“Should one of these four pillars be missing, there will be no lasting recovery nor real confidence in the system,” he said.

In remarks that were included in a written version of the speech but that Fillon did not deliver orally, he said the sums engaged in stimulus plans mattered less than the content of the plans and their speedy implementation. (Reporting by Sophie Louet, via Paris newsroom; Editing by Ron Askew)

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