October 15, 2011 / 4:31 PM / 8 years ago

Exclusive: Saudi cenbanker says Europe sees gravity of crisis

PARIS (Reuters) - Saudi central bank governor Muhammad Al-Jasser said on Saturday the euro zone’s debt crisis had become the number one short-term challenge for the world economy yet he felt the bloc’s leaders were determined to find a way out.

“Not only Saudi Arabia but members of the G20 are convinced that challenge facing the global economy is the European challenge in the short term,” Al-Jasser told Reuters following two days of talks between G20 finance chiefs in Paris.

“However, we felt from the interventions of our European colleagues that they appreciate the gravity of the situation and they are determined to do what it takes to safeguard the European economy and financial markets,” Al-Jasser said.

“They told us that at the October 23 summit decisions will be taken that will reassure Europeans first, and the rest of the world second, that Europe is not only able but also willing to do what it takes to safeguard the European markets. I take what they told us at face value and I have no reason to doubt their determination.”

Reporting by Marin Dokoupil, writing by Catherine Bremer

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