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Australian PM calls for new economic order

Australia's prime minister has called for a "new world order" of government intervention and regulation, blaming capitalist greed for the global economic crisis.

business Updated: Jan 31, 2009 09:20 IST

Australia's prime minister has called for a "new world order" of government intervention and regulation, blaming capitalist greed for the global economic crisis.

Kevin Rudd's administration came to power in November 2007, ending more than a decade of conservative, free-market rule, and has already launched a series of stimulus measures in response to the crisis.

"The time has come, off the back of the current crisis, to proclaim that the great neo-liberal experiment of the past 30 years has failed; that the emperor has no clothes," said Rudd in an essay previewed in Sydney on Saturday.

"Neo-liberalism and the free-market fundamentalism it has produced has been revealed as little more than personal greed dressed up as an economic philosophy," he wrote, in a 7,000-word essay to be published next week in The Monthly magazine.

Aligning his views with those of new US President Barack Obama, and drawing on the experiences of Depression-era US leader Franklin D Roosevelt, the centre-left leader called for a "new contract for the future that eschews the extremism of both the left and right."

"Minor tweakings of long established orthodoxies will not do," Rudd said, advocating instead a new era of "social capitalism" involving the regulation and intervention of an "activoff 10.4 billion dollar cash injection aimed mainly at families and first-home buyers to boost consumer spending.