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Developing nations seek more power

posted on 23/09/2003: 1497 views

Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and Minister of Finance and Industry, will today inaugurate the World Bank and IMF annual meetings. Today and tomorrow will mark the main component of Dubai 2003, which has lived up to its billing of being the premier global finance summit the Middle East has seen. The many meetings between global leaders and their counterparts in the finance industry in these 48 hours will obviously feel the repercussions of the disastrous outcome of the recent WTO summit in Cancun, which broke down on vexing trade issues between the US, the EU and the developing nations. Subsidies provided by the US and EU were the main factor behind the strife.

According to sources, developing nations will look to have a greater say in the working and decisions of the World Bank and IMF. They may even consider seeking the top spot for their candidates in these multilateral bodies. The presidency of the World Bank has always been held by an American, while the managing director's position of the IMF has gone to a European. The issue of the Chinese currency is bound to be another topic, with positions hardening on either side on whether the country should agree to a full float.

On its part, the World Bank will sound a wake-up call for delivering on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), which aim to halve the number of people living in poverty by 2015. With the target date just over a decade away, now is the time for global leadership on action to reach the goals. "There was unprecedented consensus around these issues at global summits in Doha, Monterrey and Johannesburg in 2001 and 2002. But momentum has slowed this year and it must be renewed," said a report published on the World Bank's website. (The Gulf News)


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