One day before the G-7 conference opens in Halifax, Prime Minister Jean Chretien said he will push for concrete plans to allow global financial institutions to prevent crisis and instability in the world economy.
''We cannot simply expect those famous currency speculators to shut off their computer terminals, hang up their red suspenders and get a life,'' Chretien said yesterday.
''But what we can do, what we must do, is take effective, concrete action to minimize the vulnerability of national economies. Action to get our own houses in order, as Canada is doing, and action that ensures that international financial institutions have the means to move decisively.''
Chretien made it clear that while the G-7 cannot control or provide solutions for problems such as currency instability, it can better manage the problems through mechanisms for better cooperation and coordination of information among international trade and finance institutions.
''I believe that this meeting in Halifax can be one of the most constructive in the G-7 process,'' Chretien told 300 people attending a forum to discuss global economic change.
''It's a time for reform. The world has changed tremendously. We could not discuss it last year. Now everyone is in agreement that it has to be discussed.''
Specifics Chretien is aiming to promote as chairman of this year's summit, the third to be held in Canada, include:
Leadership on the need for cooperation between the WTO - the new World Trade Organization - and other international economic institutions.
Ways to improve the International Monetary Fund's surveillance and early-warning capacities with mechanisms to respond quickly if a crisis develops.
More resources for the IMF to effectively manage emerging crises.
Ways to ensure an adequate regulatory and supervisory framework for financial instutions and markets with more supervision at the national level.
A strengthening of the United Nations' capacity to act with a streaminling of its numerous agencies and programs and more efficient use of its financial resources and a review.
Ways to expand trade liberalization in the areas of telecommunications, financial services, investement and competitions policies.
Targeting of funds from international financial institutions to the world's poorest countries to focus on the the provision of public goods and the development of a healthy private sector.
Chretien said that in addition to economic issues, leaders attending the summit will discuss other issues of international concern, from the role of the UN in fighting terrorism to dealing with the crisis in the former Yugoslavia.
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Revised: June 3, 1995
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