News / Economy

China Urges IMF to Give More Power to Emerging Markets

People walk outside the International Monetary Fund headquarters at the start of the annual IMF-World Bank fall meetings in Washington, D.C., Oct. 8, 2013.
People walk outside the International Monetary Fund headquarters at the start of the annual IMF-World Bank fall meetings in Washington, D.C., Oct. 8, 2013.
Reuters
China called on IMF member nations on Wednesday to stick to a commitment to give emerging markets more power at the global lender after U.S. lawmakers set back historic reforms that would give developing countries a greater say.
 
The remarks by Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei were an indirect criticism of the United States, the biggest and most powerful IMF member, where lawmakers failed on Monday to agree on funding measures needed for the reforms to move forward, though Hong did not mention the United States by name.
 
The U.S. Congress must sign off on the IMF funding to complete 2010 reforms that would make China the IMF's third-largest member and revamp the IMF board to reduce the dominance of Western Europe.
 
The changes would also give greater say to nations such as Brazil and India to reflect their growing economic heft.
 
“The IMF quotas reform is an important decision made by the organization,” Hong said at a daily news briefing. “The relevant organization's members should earnestly implement the decision, and honor and enhance the voice and representation of developing countries within the IMF.”
 
International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Christine Lagarde delivers remarks on the world's economy at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C, Jan. 15, 2013.International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Christine Lagarde delivers remarks on the world's economy at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C, Jan. 15, 2013.
x
International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Christine Lagarde delivers remarks on the world's economy at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C, Jan. 15, 2013.
International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Christine Lagarde delivers remarks on the world's economy at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C, Jan. 15, 2013.
​Speaking at the National Press Club in Washington, IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde said it was “disconcerting” the IMF funding was not included in a spending bill approved by the U.S. Congress on Monday.
 
“I very much hope it's a question of timing and not a decision to exclude the IMF,” Lagarde said.
 
“I hope that sensible and common sense judgment will prevail,” she said, adding that she believed the United States was still committed to supporting the Fund.
 
The reform of the voting shares, known as quotas, cannot proceed without the United States, which holds the only controlling share of IMF votes.
 
After putting off the request in 2012 because of the U.S. presidential election, the U.S. Treasury has sought to tuck the provision into several bills since March.
 
The administration's requests, however, have been met with skepticism from some Republicans, who see them as tantamount to approving fresh funding in a tight budget environment.
 
Some lawmakers have also raised concerns about how well the IMF is helping struggling economies in Europe and the risks attached to IMF loans, suggesting Congress is in no hurry to approve any changes
 
India's Finance Ministry did not immediately respond to requests for comment. But an official at the ministry, who has been dealing with multilateral institutions including the IMF, said India was “disappointed” at Congress' lack of action.
 
The official declined to be identified because he was not authorized to talk to the media.
 
A South Korean Finance Ministry official, who declined to be identified, said: “While we appreciate the U.S. government's efforts, we regret the fact that the proposed funding measure fell through in Congress at the last minute.”
 
“IMF quota reform is an important matter to address and we hope that the matter will be discussed at the G-20 level with the end-January deadline approaching,” the official said.
 
Developing nations have long viewed the IMF with suspicion for promoting disastrous privatizations that complicated the transition from communism for some emerging nations in the early 1990s, and for pushing budget cuts that exacerbated debt crises in Asia and Latin America a few years later.
 
That suspicion has been compounded by a power structure that dates to IMF's founding in 1944. The structure was shaped by the victors of World War II - the United States and Europe.

You May Like

Turkey's Controversial Reform Bill Giving Investors Jitters

Homeland security reform bill will give police new powers in search, seizure, detention and arrests, while restricting the rights of suspects, their attorneys More

Audio Slideshow In Kenyan Prison, Good Grades Are Path to Freedom

Some inmates who get high marks could see their sentences commuted to non-custodial status More

'Rumble in the Jungle' Turns 40

'The Champ' knocked Foreman out to regain crown he had lost 7 years earlier when US government accused him of draft-dodging and boxing officials revoked his license More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisiai
X
Henry Ridgwell
October 30, 2014 11:39 PM
Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisia

Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Africa Tells its Story Through Fashion

In Africa, Fashion Week is a riot of colors, shapes, patterns and fabrics - against the backdrop of its ongoing struggle between nature and its fast-growing urban edge. How do these ideas translate into needle and thread? VOA’s Anita Powell visited this year’s Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Africa in Johannesburg to find out.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.

All About America

AppleAndroid

World Currencies

EUR
USD
0.7893
JPY
USD
107.68
GBP
USD
0.6238
CAD
USD
1.1214
INR
USD
61.185

Rates may not be current.