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G20 summit unlikely to be Bretton Woods II: IMF official
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The upcoming G20 summit will inaugurate global efforts to fix the world financial system, but will not be Bretton Woods II, as many expect, an International Monetary Fund (IMF) official said Thursday.

Saturday's summit in Washington will be critical for the future of the existing global economic and financial structure, China's executive director at the IMF, Ge Huayong, told Xinhua in an interview.

"The G20, which currently represents some 80 percent of the global GDP, 75 percent of international trade and about 70 percent of the global population, should play a crucial role in handling the financial crisis," said Ge.

A victory over the crisis requires a global solution, he said, adding that the 20 countries attending the summit should send the international community a clear message that it is now time to strengthen international cooperation to tackle the crisis.

The crisis, largely a result of excessive risk-taking and faulty risk management practices in the financial markets, has highlighted the immediate need for comprehensive reforms to the existing global economic and financial structure, or the so-called Bretton Woods system, said Ge.

International monetary and financial reform should abide by the two principles of continued reform and wide participation, so that all countries in the global economic and financial framework can balance their rights and obligations and take part equally in the regulation-making process, he added.

"To reform the existing structure, however, does not mean to overthrow everything in it, but to make the structure reflect the changing global economy and meet the demands of the structure's development in the future," the IMF official said. "The summit will not be Bretton Woods II."

The Washington summit is widely expected to update the global financial rules created at a conference at Bretton Woods, New Hampshire, in 1944, which established international monetary protocols governing trade, banking and other financial relations among nations.

The Bretton Woods conference led to the creation of the IMF and the World Bank.

(Xinhua News Agency November 14, 2008)

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