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Is world ready for a new international financial system?
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Emerging economies demand more voice, representation

Last Sunday in Sao Paulo, Brazil, finance ministers and central bank presidents from 20 leading nations agreed to boost emerging economies' role in negotiations to overhaul the international financial system.

Brazil, Russia, India, China and other developing countries say the global financial system drawn up by rich nations in the 1940s has failed to prevent economic crisis, fueling their argument that they should be given a role in crafting a new solution.

"We'll have to change the tires of the car with the car moving. This means in 60 to 90 days we'll need the solutions for new financial regulation," said Brazilian Finance Minister Guido Mantega.

At the G20 summit in Washington, Chinese President Hu Jintao urged the international community to earnestly draw lessons from the ongoing financial crisis and undertake necessary reform of the international financial system through full consultations among all stakeholders.

"Reform of the international financial system should aim at establishing a new international financial order that is fair, just, inclusive and orderly and fostering an institutional environment conducive to sound global economic development," Hu said.

He said the reform should be conducted in a comprehensive, balanced, incremental and result-oriented manner.

For emerging economies, some took the summit as an opportunity to raise their voices.

Brazil's President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva urged greater say and representation for developing countries in international economic organizations such as the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.

Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh called for changes needed in the global financial architecture to prevent the current financial crisis from recurring.

With the financial storm close to drawing most industrialized powers into recession, analysts say emerging economies are gaining unprecedented clout on the global stage. Some even believe the Western countries' road to recovery runs through the emerging economies.

(Xinhua News Agency November 17, 2008)

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