WASHINGTON (AFP) - British Prime Minister Gordon Brown urged the United States in a prepared speech Wednesday to "seize the moment" and rally its partners and allies behind coordinated efforts to address the global economic crisis. "I say we should seize the moment - because never before have I seen a world so willing to come together. Never before has that been more needed. And never before have the benefits of cooperation been so far-reaching," Brown said. His comments came in excerpts released in advance of his speech to a joint session of the US Congress, scheduled for 11:00 am (1600 GMT). He was to become the fifth British prime minister to address the combined Senate and House of Representatives. Brown also urged US lawmakers - who recently endorsed a "Buy American" spending provision - to resist protectionist forces that could deepen the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression of the 1930s. "America knows from its history that its reach goes far beyond its geography. For a century you have carried upon your shoulders the greatest of responsibilities: To work with and for the rest of the world. And let me tell you that now more than ever the rest of the world wants to work with you," he said. "And if these times have shown us anything it is that the major challenges we all face are global," said the prime minister, who declared that US President Barack Obama could count on "the most pro-American European leadership in living memory." It is "a leadership that wants to cooperate more closely together, in order to be a stronger partner for you. There is no old Europe, no new Europe, there is only your friend Europe," he said, in a reference to bitter divisions over the Iraq war. "We should have the confidence that we can seize the opportunities ahead and make the future work for us," said the prime minister, who met with Obama Tuesday as part of a campaign to overhaul the global financial system. "While today people are anxious and feel insecure, over the next two decades our world economy will double in size - twice as many opportunities for business, twice as much prosperity, and the biggest expansion of middle class incomes and jobs the world has ever seen," said Brown. Brown said at the White House on Tuesday that global powers could reach a "new deal" on overhauling the world's crippled financial system within months. Obama agreed on global collaboration to handle future financial crises, but did not give a specific, public endorsement of Brown's calls for a sweeping new global regulatory framework. Brown laid the groundwork for G-20 talks on the global economic downturn which he will host in London in April. In the next few months a global "new deal" could be reached in which every nation would be involved in "sorting out and cleaning up the banking system," Brown told reporters in the Oval Office one day before becoming the fifth British prime minister to address a joint US congressional session. Tony Blair spoke in July 2003; Margaret Thatcher in February 1985; Winston Churchill in January 1952, May 1943, and December 1941, the most of any individual; and Clement Attlee in November 1945.