Barack Obama’s first major international summit could be in Birmingham, when world leaders gather in April to discuss the world economic crisis.

MP Tom Watson, a Government minister, is pressing for the West Midlands to be chosen as the venue for the UK-hosted G20 Summit.

Birmingham, London and Manchester are being considered, and Birmingham has a strong case after hosting the G8 summit of world leaders ten years ago.

Leaders of 19 nations, as well as the EU, met in Washington last week to discuss co-ordinated action on the economy.

Meetings of the Group of 20, known as G20, usually involve only finance ministers, but this year it was decided leaders including Gordon Brown and US President George Bush should take part.

One notable absentee was Barack Obama, US President-elect. However, he is expected to be present when the G20 reconvene in April, having taken office on January 20, 2009.

When Birmingham hosted the G8 in 1998 it injected £12 million into the regional economy, as hotels and restaurants hosted more than 6,000 delegates, Government officials and journalists.

The official venue was the International Convention Centre, although delegates retired to Weston Park in Staffordshire for detailed discussions.

Mr Watson, a minister cabinet office, said: “The West Midlands would be the natural place to hold it. We are the manufacturing powerhouse of the country, and one responding rapidly to global change in the economy.

“We have international links and a proud record of being world leaders. As a constituency MP I am pushing for the region to host the G20.”

The G20 is usually seen as junior to the G8, which includes only the world’s eight largest economies, but President Bush convened the Washington meeting on the basis that the economic crisis required a response from every leading economy.

It meant that nations such as Brazil, India and China – which are members of the G20 but not the G8 – had a place at the top table.

World leaders agreed to “use fiscal measures to stimulate domestic demand to rapid effect.”

But further discussions are expected to lead to radical reforms to the world’s financial system.

President-elect Obama said in a statement that the G20 provided an important forum for tackling the world’s problems.

A spokesman said: “The president-elect believes that the G20 summit ... is an important opportunity to seek a co-ordinated response to the global financial crisis.”