At UN, Australia says radical reform needed to prevent further financial crises

24 September 2009

Working people and their families have borne the brunt of the economic crisis worldwide, Australia has told the General Assembly’s annual high-level debate, calling for an overhaul of global governance to ensure it does not happen again.

Addressing the Assembly last night, Prime Minister Kevin Rudd said the financial meltdown and subsequent recession have been “a wake-up call to the international community to reform the institutions of global economic governance.”

Much remains to be done to “prevent the unrestrained greed of unregulated financial markets” from wreaking havoc again, he said, despite the reforms already being undertaken by the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the Financial Stability Board and the Group of 20 (G20) bloc of major economies.

Citing examples of rising unemployment and declining manufacturing from his own country, he said the price of the failure of major institutions last year “has been paid by working people and their families right across the world…

“We can never forget these men, these women and their families as we seek to find a path out of this global recession,” Mr. Rudd stressed.

He said a global economic recovery was far from certain and urged countries participating in this week G20 summit in the United States city of Pittsburgh to “agree on a framework to deliver effective coordination of our national economic policies.”

The Prime Minister said G20 members should agree on a common objective for achieving balanced and sustainable growth, outline how their own strategies contribute to that common objective, and allow the IMF to analyse national economic plans “to determine whether they are consistent and collectively adequate” to obtain sustainable growth worldwide.


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