U.K. Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne said leaders at the Group of 20 summit in Cannes, France had a “real sense of urgency” about the world economy, with euro-region members under pressure to stem their debt crisis.
“The euro zone have taken important decisions,” Osborne told reporters today. “Are they willing to implement those decisions? The message that we’re getting here in Cannes is that they are. Britain and other countries, including the U.S., have put pressure on the euro zone to take that decisive action and that pressure has had an effect”
Osborne said he welcomed the European Central Bank’s surprise decision today to cut interest rates. He said it was “up to the euro zone to decide within the euro zone how it provides the resources to stand behind the euro.”
Asked what effect a breakup of the European single currency might have on U.K. banks, Osborne said Britain’s banking system was “well-capitalized and liquid” and had been tested against current market conditions.