Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy told leaders attending a summit here Sunday that countries should deal with the financial crisis by taking measures appropriate for their economic situation, Spanish officials said.

Countries that can afford stimulus policies should implement them, while other nations should focus on reducing their budget deficits, Rajoy said.

The prime minister laid out his position in a closed-door address to the leaders attending the CELAC-EU summit in the Chilean capital.

Rajoy advocated policies that promote growth for both the European Union and Latin America, but he said policy coordination was essential, Spanish officials said.

The prime minister both Europe and Latin America must avoid adopting protectionist policies, Spanish officials said.

Rajoy told the leaders that relations betwen Spain and Germany were good and officials must continue working together to bring about an economic recovery because both domestic and European solutions would be needed to end the crisis, Spanish officials said.

The prime minister has been saying in recent days that some countries need to implement growth policies and he had an opportunity Sunday to contrast his views with those of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who is in Santiago.

Rajoy and Merkel spoke on Saturday and again on Sunday.

Merkel responded to Rajoy's proposals on Saturday, saying that Germany was doing its part to have a "robust" Euro zone and suggested that Spain leverage its competitive advantage to expand trade with Latin America.

The two leaders will continue discussing economic policy at the Spanish-German summit on Feb. 4 in Berlin. EFE