Currency Imbalances And Development Key Concerns For UN At The G-20


Tala Dowlatshahi | Thursday, November 11, 2010 at 11:04AM | Share Article | Email Article | Print Article
In his address to the National Assembly of the Republic of Korea today, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon told world leaders including the Presidents of the United States and South Africa that his native country of Korea has been a vital example of economic success these past few years, even during the ongoing global financial crisis.

“By any category or by any standard, Korea now stands within the 15 largest economies, with the strong political maturity and democratic development. Now Korea has now become an idol – a model role for the whole world.”

Ban stressed the need for further overseas development assistance (ODA) to lesser developed countries in order to promote the Millennium Development Goals (MDG’s) to tackle poverty, malnutrition and health ailments while boosting education and global partnerships.

He has criticized the developing world for failing to commit the 100 billion dollars annually to developing countries by 2020. Yet with countries like China purposely devaluing the yuan in order to make strong gains on the international export market place, the trend towards lowering currency standards could deeply affect gains for the developing world. China has made nearly 200 billion in surplus gains on its exports, but at the expense of other nations.

The recent United States plan to limit trade imbalances, while at the same time gaining a trade advantage is causing a division among key ODA contributing countries. Ban stated earlier this week:

“I am concerned by the divergence of opinions on these issues…This is a time for unity.”

The United States Federal Reserve’s recent declaration to devalue the US dollar in order to appreciate US export commodities has G-20 nations like Germany, China and Brazil, concerned that this action and the plan to control trade imbalances would cause social and economic disruption in their countries. There is also concern about the exploitation of local labor and trade unions in developing countries.

The US fear that India and China are growing economic powers, and thus will further increase their enhanced authority on the international export marketplace in the next few years is being viewed by many as the impetus of this new plan being presented at the G-20 this week.

With development aid at the top of its agenda, the UN has vowed to stay vigilant in “unifying” the nations on these key concerns.

“The global economic recovery remains fragile. Sixty-four million people have been pushed into extreme poverty this year. Everywhere there is economic insecurity and anxiety about jobs,” Ban-Ki Moon said.

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