September 24, 2009

World leaders gather in Pittsburgh for G20

The global financial crisis and how to deal with it in the future is the overriding discussion topic as the Group of 20 economic summit begins in Pittsburgh.

Leaders representing 85 percent of the world's economic output traveled to Pittsburgh Thursday for the two-day summit.

The White House is showcasing the host city, which U.S. President Barack Obama says exhibited a 21st century rise from the ashes after a well-documented plunge following the closing of much of the city's steel industry, CNN reported.

Pittsburgh has transformed itself from the city of steel to a center for high-tech innovation -- including green technology, education and training, and research and development, Obama said.

Most of the world leaders traveled from New York, where they attended the start of the U.N. General Assembly. The G20 gathering marks Obama's inaugural hosting of a major international summit.

In separate dinners Thursday at the Phipps Conservatory, the heads of state and their financial ministers are expected to assess their previous efforts to rouse the global economy out of its slump, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported.

On Friday, the meetings move to the David L. Lawrence Convention Center, where the leaders are expected to discuss trade, climate change, tightening financial regulations and the global financial crisis.