IMF reforms for Prague

Chris Burford cburford at
Tue Aug 8 00:23:18 PDT 2000

IMF Managing Director Horst Koehler said his efforts will be directed at focusing the IMF on its core duties of preventing financial problems in a country from erupting into a full-blown crisis and if that fails, marshaling IMF resources more effectively to manage it.

Koehler said a key lesson the IMF learned from the 1997-98 Asian financial crisis, which at one point threatened to pushed the entire world into recession, was the need for greater attention on how global financial markets operate.

IMF critics, including many in Congress, have complained that the IMF botched its job of serving as a global financial traffic cop.

[Traffic cop sounds like small government - but can a traffic cop operate simply with a system that behaves according to the principles of chaos theory? My guess is that this apparent retreat from expensive adventures trying to prop up falling currency dominoes, opens the door to *greater* involvement in the world economy. - CB]

``The issue is to make globalization work for the benefit of all. There will not be a good future for the rich if there is no prospect of a better future for the poor.''

[Trying to pacify the anarchist critics. It seems unlikely the protesters will run out of steam over the coming years. Possible, but I think on balance unlikely. So we are in for a period of more pragmatic global governance of the world economy while trying to pacify radical critics of capitalism. - CB

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