Obama says he has set goal to cut U.S. deficit in half by 2013

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U.S. President Barack Obama said in Toronto on Sunday that he has set a goal of cutting the deficit of the United States in half by 2013.

Obama made the remarks at a press conference immediately after the conclusion of the Fourth Summit of the Group of 20 (G20) major economies.

The G20 summit issued a declaration in which deadlines were set for advanced economies to cut their debts and realize fiscal consolidation.

"Advanced economies have committed to fiscal plans that will at least halve deficits by 2013 and stabilize or reduce government debt-to-GDP ratios by 2016," said the final document worked out and accepted by the G20 leaders.

Advanced deficit countries should take actions to boost national savings while maintaining open markets and enhancing export competitiveness, it added.

At the press conference, Obama said: "Because a durable recovery must also include fiscal responsibility, we agreed to balance the need for continued growth in the short-term and fiscal sustainability in the medium term."

"As I reiterated to my colleagues, after years of taking on too much debt, Americans cannot -- and will not -- borrow and buy the world's way to lasting prosperity," said the president.

"Indeed, I've made it clear that the United States will compete aggressively for the jobs and industries and markets of the future," he added.

Obama has earlier set the goal of doubling U.S. exports over the next five years, which he said would support millions of jobs in the country.

Due to the falling revenue amid a deep recession and a huge economic stimulus package, the U.S. federal deficit soared to 1.42 trillion dollars in 2009 and is estimated at some 1.6 trillion dollars this year.

The president's ambitious healthcare overhaul is also expected to be quite costly in the first few years, but will eventually help cut government expenditures if it works.

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