Leaders from the world's 20 biggest economies - the so-called G-20 - meet on Thursday in Cannes, France for a two-day meeting where they will discuss the economic crisis hurting the US and European economies.
Benedict during a general audience at the Vatican said he hoped the G-20 '''will help overcome the difficulties being experienced at a global level.''
These were troubles that 'hinder the promotion of authentically human and integral development,' the pope said.
Adding to the sense of urgency, financial markets on Tuesday plunged around the world following the announcement of a Greek referendum on proposed austerity measures that would allow the country to receive tens-of-billions of euros in aid and avoid default. Should Greek voters reject painful cost cutting, the country could stop paying its debts and exit the euro currency, raising worries about the durability of the 17-member monetary union union.
The Vatican last week called for creation of a global political watchdog to help oversee the economy and curb "economic liberalism that spurns rules and controls.''