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US President Barack Obama will not concede industries of the 21st century to China, India or Europe, a top presidential aide has said as he defended the administration’s loan guarantee programme.

“This President will not concede the industries of the 21st century to China, India, Europe and elsewhere,” the White House press secretary, Jay Carney, told reporters travelling with Obama to Ohio.

Opponents had been attacking Obama, highlighting reports of top donors landing plum administration posts and securing government aid. They cite at the top of that list the department of energy loan guarantees that went to alternative energy companies.