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Obama, Noda vow to push economic growth
by Staff Writers
United Nations (AFP) Sept 21, 2011

US President Barack Obama held his first talks with Japan's new Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda on Wednesday, and both leaders pledged to boost fragile global economic growth.

The leaders met on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York. Noda replaced the unpopular Naoto Kan as Prime Minister on September 2.

"As the two largest economies in the world, we have to continue to promote growth that can help put our people to work and improve standards of living," Obama said.

"We have to modernize our alliance to meet the needs of the 21st century," Obama said, and reiterated that the United States stood ready to offer Japan further help as it fights back from its quake-tsunami disaster.

Noda said that the United States had provided "enormous support" for Japan since the disaster in March, and said the alliance was a pillar of Japanese foreign policy.

He also said through a translator that the economy "might be drawn back into another recession, and Japan and the United States must work on the economic growth and the fiscal situation at the same time."

It was unclear whether Noda had the Japanese or the global economy in mind, amid rising fears that slowing world growth could result in a so-called double dip recession.

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