Exchange With Reporters Prior to a Meeting With Congressional Leaders
Q. Mr. President, why not resume nuclear testing? There are a lot of people who argue that it's necessary to ensure the safety of the stockpile.
The President. I'll have a statement on that in the next few days. I've been working very hard on it. I will say this then, the story I read about it today is not quite accurate. But I have made a decision, and the administration will have a policy, and we'll announce it sometime in the next few days. We're working out some of the details, and we haven't finished our congressional consultations yet.
Q. You mean if somebody else tests first, you won't then test?
The President. I have nothing else to say about it. I just—I'll talk about it when—
National and International Economy
Q. Mr. President, what do you think of the new economic figures that have come out over the last couple of days?
The President. Well, most of them are pretty discouraging, and some are encouraging. But the most important thing is to look at this thing over the long run. We've had 3 or 4 very tough years. And there's a global recession. Two-thirds of our jobs in the late eighties came from exports, and it's hard to generate jobs from exports when many European countries have actually negative growth and Japan has no growth. And one of the reasons that we're having this meeting today is to talk about what the United States can do at the meeting of the G-7 to try to get growth going in the global economy.
We have low interest rates now; people can invest; a lot of people are refinancing their business and home loans, so there's money out there to invest. But they've got to be able to know that if we create jobs, that people will be able to sell their products and services. And that's why this G-7 meeting is so important, trying to get some growth back into the global economy that will get the export portion of our job growth going again.
Q. And what would you like the other G7 nations to do, sir?
The President. What would I like them—
Q. Yes, sir.
The President. I think Japan ought to stimulate their economy and open their markets. And the Europeans should resolve their own differences about agriculture and other things and help us to sign the GATT agreement before the end of the year. And the Germans have worked very hard, the German Government has, but I think the German central bank should continue to lower interest rates there so that all of us together can expand the economy.
It's very hard for the United States alone to grow jobs without help from other nations. So those are the things that I hope we can keep working on. And if we get a good trade agreement, if we could open the markets of other countries, then I think you'll see some real growth coming into the economy.
Q. Is that possible given the political situation of the leaders?
The President. It's harder, but it's possible.
NOTE: The exchange began at 10:21 a.m. in the Cabinet Room at the White House. A tape was not available for verification of the content of this exchange.
William J. Clinton, Exchange With Reporters Prior to a Meeting With Congressional Leaders Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/220820