Despite the seriousness of the economic issues facing world leaders at the G20 summit in Cannes, France, US President Barack Obama managed to make a mild joke at the expense of the looks of his French counterpart, Nicolas Sarkozy.

While congratulating Sarkozy on the recent birth of his daughter, Giulia, Obama hoped the child inherits the looks of her mother, supermodel Carla Bruni.

I want to mention that this is our first meeting since the arrival of the newest Sarkozy, and I want to congratulate Nicolas and Carla, Obama said.

And I informed Nicolas on the way in I was confident Giulia inherited her mother's looks, rather than her father's, which I think is an excellent thing.

He also added: Now, we share one of the greatest challenges and blessings in life, being fathers to our daughters.

Reportedly, German chancellor Angela Merkel and UK Prime Minister David Cameron laughed heartily at Obama’s jibe.

The Daily Telegraph of UK reported that Sarkozy allegedly took the joke well.

However, Sarkozy is notoriously sensitive about his looks and particularly his short height.