25 Apr 2009

G7 signals worst of world recession may be over

3:37 pm on 25 April 2009

Finance ministers from the Group of Seven countries say the global economy may be past the worst phase of a recession although recovery was not yet assured.

G7 finance ministers and central bankers said after a meeting that the pace of decline in their economies has slowed and economic activity should begin to recover later this year.

However, they said the outlook remained weak and there was a risk that the global economy may still worsen.

It was a less dire assessment than the G7 finance officials delivered at their last gathering in February, when they warned that the severe downturn would persist through most of 2009 and made no mention of promising signs of stability.

In a communique, the group pledged to make sure that big financial firms are sound.

"We will continue to act, as needed, to restore lending, provide liquidity support, inject capital into financial institutions, protect savings and deposits and address impaired assets," the statement said.

The G7 comprises the United States, Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy and Japan. The larger G20 group, which includes emerging economies such as China and India, held a meeting after the G7 but issued no official statement.