Danger zone

Euro sign1Members of the International Monetary Fund spent the weekend working on a rescue plan for the eurozone as pressure to solve the crisis intensifies. In a joint statement released today they promise to “strongly support this effort”, but do not reveal any concrete details of their strategy. Their meeting follows last week’s release of the World Economic Outlook, in which the organisation warns the global economy has entered “a dangerous new phase”. It lowered its global growth forecast to 4% in 2012, from over 5% in 2010 – news that sent stock markets around the world tumbling. Just two days later, economists at the World Trade Organization revised their trade forecast for this year to 5.8%, down from their earlier conservative estimate of 6.5%. Trade has grown more slowly than expected in recent months while the outlook for the global economy in general and that for the eurozone in particular is becoming increasingly uncertain. “We are encouraged by the determination of our euro-area colleagues to do what is needed to resolve the euro-area crisis,” the statement released by the International Monetary Fund says. Christine Lagarde, the managing director, says members need to move quicker to officially approve previously agreed changes in the International Monetary Fund’s quotas and representation that will give greater say in running the institution to dynamic emerging markets. Lagarde says the key to resolving the current difficulties in Europe, and particularly the Greek crisis, is “implementation, implementation, implementation”. ©2011 funds europe

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