ST. PETERSBURG, Russia — In his first major economic speech since becoming president, Dmitri A. Medvedev said Saturday that the world might be in the throes of the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression and that a newly revived Russia could offer solutions to a systemic crisis that has underscored America’s shortcomings.
Mr. Medvedev, who was inaugurated on May 7, spoke at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, an annual event since the 1990s that was thrust into the spotlight last year as Russia’s answer to rival forums held in Europe.
It was also a showcase for the former imperial capital of St. Petersburg, hometown of Prime Minister Vladimir V. Putin and Mr. Medvedev. The forum opened Friday evening with a free concert for city residents.
In a keynote address that underscored his knowledge of corporate terminology, Mr. Medvedev spoke of “economic egoism” and “economic nationalism,” and he made specific reference to the United States overreaching its economic capabilities.
“It turned out to be an illusion that one country, even the most powerful, could take upon itself the role of global government,” he said.
“Moreover, namely, the dissonance between the formal role of the United States of America in the world economy and its actual capabilities was one of the central causes of the current crisis. However big the American market, and however reliable the American financial system, it’s not capable of replacing global goods and financial markets.”