Sunday, December 12, 2004



The UK set up an official website on Friday for its chairmanship of the G7/8 in 2005 ( Its priorities, for the attention of leading heads of state, are Africa, climate change, countering terrorism, non-proliferation and supporting reform in the Middle East.

But a few years ago, the UK thought public regulation of the global economy was a priority. A merger of the IMF, World Bank and the Bank for International Settlements was the way ahead. However, a respected commentator said at the time (see below) that the proposal assumes "a degree of intellectual consensus and political will that simply does not exist." In essence the global economy can't ever be regulated.

This suggests that a nation's constant quest for economic growth can't be curtailed. On this basis, it doesn't look hopeful for Africa, climate change etc.

It therefore seems that the UK should stick with its original aim - effective governance of the global economy. The European Union would surely welcome this stance: it is hurting from the present chaos in exchange rate arrangements. Incidentally, the UK is also chairman of the EU in 2005 (the second half).

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