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Global Finance Leaders Agree to Boost IMF


Economic leaders from rich and emerging countries have agreed on the need to increase funding for the International Monetary Fund to help the countries hit hardest by the global recession.

Finance ministers from the Group of 20 nations, holding talks near London Saturday, said in a statement that resources should be expanded at the IMF. The international bank has loaned billions of dollars to struggling countries.

The ministers said support should also be given to the Asian Development Bank.

The statement says the group remains committed to helping emerging and developing countries, and to favoring open trade and investment instead of protectionism.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said after Saturday's meeting that the high-level of commitment shown by members will help economic recovery come more quickly.

Meanwhile, G-20 economic leaders are still trying to resolve deep divisions on how to reverse the global recession, ahead of the summit of world leaders scheduled for next month.

U.S. and European countries disagree on whether more government spending is necessary to stimulate the economy, or if tighter regulation of the financial markets is more urgently needed.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said she is optimistic that agreement can be reached with the United States, and with emerging economies.

She spoke Saturday following a meeting in London with British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, who called for a revised international regulatory system.

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