World economy still facing challenges: Australian Treasurer

08:32, September 10, 2010      

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The latest shaky assessment of the global economy proves recovery will be an ongoing challenge, Australian Treasurer Wayne Swan said on Thursday.

But he has also used it as a reminder of how well Australia has fared through the economic crisis.

The latest Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) report has thrown some question marks over the pace of world's recovery, with the top seven economies (G7) likely to slow to an annual rate of 1.5 percent in the second half of the year.

According to Australian Associated Press, the report draws a blank on whether the loss of momentum is temporary, or whether it signals a more significant underlying weakness in the global recovery.

"The OECD's latest Interim Economic Assessment is a reminder of the ongoing challenges that the global economy faces," Swan said in a statement on Thursday.

But while other economies struggle to maintain momentum, he said Australia continued to be the envy of the developed world.

Australia's jobless rate fell back to 5.1 percent on Thursday, lower than the major advanced economies and around half the level seen in the U.S. and Europe, Swan said.

"The OECD report today also highlights the strength of Australia's public finances, confirming that Australia has the lowest gross government debt of any reported OECD country," he said.

Australia's economy also grew by 3.3 percent to the June quarter, or 2.3 percent in average terms in 2009/10, much higher than the estimated average growth rate for the OECD area as a whole.



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