London : Prime Minister Manmohan Singh arrived here Tuesday on a four-day visit to attend the Group of 20 (G20) summit that will focus on finding collective solutions to the global financial downturn.
Besides participating in the summit of 20 major developed countries and emerging economies Thursday, Manmohan Singh will meet British Prime Minister Gordon Brown and US President Barack Obama on the sidelines of the meeting.
It will be Manmohan Singh’s first meeting with Obama.
This is his first trip abroad since his multiple heart bypass surgery in January. It is also his last scheduled international trip as head of the current United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government.
As he left for London Tuesday afternoon, the prime minister underlined the need for the summit to take “coordinated and purposeful action” and “coordinated fiscal stimulus by major economies” to offset the decline in private demand.
The prime minister also underlined the pitfalls of resorting to protectionism in the trade of both goods and services and reform and restructuring of international financial institutions.
Manmohan Singh will also attend a reception being hosted by the queen Wednesday and a banquet by the British prime minister.
Besides bilateral issues, terrorism and the situation in Afghanistan will figure prominently in Manmohan Singh’s discussions with Obama Thursday.