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15 October, 2009 - Published 18:04 GMT

West should bear burden

Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa called on greater co-operation among Asian nations to overcome the global economic crisis.

Speaking at the 8th Asia cooperation dialogue in Colombo he blamed dominant economies of the west for creating the current financial crisis.

"This is a crisis largely imposed on us by those outside the Asian region. Our economies are today facing hardship due to the problems caused by others who should share the burdens of recovery” said president Rajapaksha. .

Many countries of Asia, and many others are carrying the burdens caused by poor regulation and the encouraging of greed in the dominant economies of the West, he added.

President Rajapaksha called upon the Asian countries to take advantage of the current situation.

"We need to turn this challenge into an opportunity by expanding intra-regional trade and the influence of our financial markets", he said

Such measures will not only strengthen our competitiveness but will also help us build valuable partnerships with other regions, added President Mahinda Rajapaksha.