Hey, how about a global rescue for Europe?

First, as their banks are restructured, the world must underpin Europe’s economy with help for a firewall strong enough to insulate Spain, Italy, and other countries. Now that Greece has brought the continent to its moment of truth, a financial re-engineering is a prerequisite for the survival of the euro. But Europe’s stability fund of around 700 billion euros, even when backed up by the International Monetary Fund, is nowhere near large enough to persuade the rest of the world that Europe can master the storms ahead. A larger firewall is now needed as Europe considers anew a French plan for the creation of euro bonds, ponders Italy’s proposal for a European-wide system of deposit insurance, and fights off a flight of capital from its periphery.

Second, to give weight to the European growth initiative, the G20 needs to return to the global growth compact first agreed in London and Pittsburgh in 2009. Ten years ago the Western consumer could drive the world economy forward. Ten years from now the Asian consumer will be the driver of growth. The G20 should plan to raise overall global growth by speeding up the opening of Asian and South American markets. It should also seek help from the International Monetary Fund to negotiate a deal in which China creates more global demand by increasing consumer spending and India further opens its markets to imports.

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