Friday 9 December 2016

Europe's future 'troubled' says IMF chief

Sandrine Rastello and Jennifer M Freedman

Published 09/12/2010 | 05:00

IMF managing director Dominique Strauss-Kahn at the European headquarters of the UN in Geneva yesterday. Photo: Reuters
IMF managing director Dominique Strauss-Kahn at the European headquarters of the UN in Geneva yesterday. Photo: Reuters

THE head of the IMF has said that Europe remains in a "troubling" situation.

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IMF managing director Dominique Strauss-Kahn, who has urged the euro area to increase the size of its rescue funds or persuade the ECB to buy up more government debt, said the effects of the global financial turmoil "are far from over".

"The situation in Europe remains troubling, and the future is more uncertain than ever," he said.

Yesterday the IMF welcomed the approval of Ireland's 2011 Budget.

"This is a clear sign of Ireland's strong commitment to tackle its problems and harness the impressive growth potential of this open and dynamic economy," a spokesman for the organisation said.

In a speech in Geneva, the IMF chief said the effects of the global financial crisis were still in play.

Mr Strauss-Kahn said the Greek and Irish debt bailouts highlighted the need for a more co-ordinated response to economic and financial storms.

"The delay in strengthening supervision and creating effective crisis resolution mechanisms could well lead to the next crisis," he cautioned, later dismissing concerns that Europe's single currency may have aggravated its problems.

"For me the euro is not the cause. The euro has to be complemented by better co-ordination at the regional level," he told diplomats gathered at the UN's European headquarters.

He called for stronger economic and financial oversight, noting that without proper supervision "disaster could be just around the corner".

"It is important to apply new rules to the financial sector," he said. "We need supervision that is not afraid of saying no to powerful interests."

He also stressed that most of the world has moved past the global financial crisis, with Asian economies largely in the clear and Latin America and Africa also faring well.

"In the United States the situation is more uncertain," he continued. "We are not out of the crisis yet but there should not be an overly European-centric perspective."

Irish Independent

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