Page last updated at 23:05 GMT, Sunday, 13 September 2009 00:05 UK

'Tighter grip on economy needed'

US Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and President Obama
World leaders pledged trillions of dollars to tackle the global slump

Most people want their government to take more control over the regulation and running of national economies, a BBC World Service poll has found.

Overall a total of 67% of people wanted an increase in "government regulation and oversight of the national economy".

In the 20 countries polled, 60% backed more spending to boost the economy.

There was much less support for banking bail-outs with most Americans, Germans and Mexicans opposed. However, most Britons did back the rescue measures.

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And when asked whether they wanted additional government funding to stimulate the economy most respondents (72%) called for increased investment in green and renewable technology.

A further 62% said governments should also pump cash into financial support for major industries and companies in trouble.

Leadership challenge

However, reaction to efforts taken to tackle the crisis by various governments across the world has been mixed.

In China (88%), Australia (68%), Egypt (63%), Brazil (59%) and Canadians (57%) the public were happiest with their government's efforts.

crisis poll graph

But, satisfaction was low in France (27%), Mexico (9%), Japan (18%), and the Philippines (24%). Mexicans were the least impressed with their government, with 88% dissatisfied with the response of their leaders.

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Americans were evenly split between those who were happy and unhappy with their government's response.

"It is clear that citizens in many countries are still not seeing the kind of economic leadership they think is needed from their national government," said Doug Miller, chairman of GlobeScan, which carried out the poll.

"Particularly low levels of satisfaction in Europe, Japan and Latin America suggest that stronger consumer confidence - seen as essential for economic recovery - will take more time in these parts of the world."

Less impressed

Away from national reactions to the situation, just 36% of those polled were happy with the actions of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF). Still fewer (32%) were impressed with steps that the executives at major banks have taken.

The survey also suggested that, overall, people in developed countries were less satisfied with all of these groups than those in developing countries.

The poll also showed that almost three in five people (59%) continue to feel that the benefits and burdens of economic development over recent years have not been shared fairly in their country, and they are in the majority in 15 out of 20 countries.

Crisis poll graph

Among the countries most dissatisfied with economic fairness were France (84% dissatisfied), Russia (77%), Turkey (77%), and Germany (76%).

Globescan and the Program on International Policy Attitudes (Pipa) at the University of Maryland quizzed 22,158 people in 20 countries - Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Egypt, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Japan, Kenya, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, the Philippines, Russia, Turkey, the UK and US - for the research.

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