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China's Hu pledges to cooperate at G20 summit

world Updated: Apr 01, 2009 15:40 IST

AFP
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Chinese President Hu Jintao has pledged his nation's support in efforts to reform the global financial system, in remarks published on Wednesday as he left for the G20 economic summit in London.

However, Hu gave no details on what China would bring to Thursday's summit of leaders from the Group of 20 industrialised and developing nations, which is being held to tackle the worst financial crisis in decades.

"The international financial system should undergo necessary reforms in an all-round, balanced, gradual and effective manner to prevent a similar crisis in the future," the official Xinhua news agency quoted Hu as saying.

"China will continue to coordinate macro-economic policies with other countries and push for the reform of the international financial system and help maintain the multilateral trade system."

Hu said China would work with others attending the summit to help bring about "positive and practical" results.

China has repeatedly called for reform of the global financial system, which it sees as dominated by developed countries, and has urged that developing nations be given a greater say.

People's Bank of China governor Zhou Xiaochuan called recently for the US dollar the global reserve currency since World War II to be replaced with a different standard run by the International Monetary Fund.

China has signalled it would like the proposal, which Russia has supported, to be discussed at the summit.

In a lengthy article, Xinhua spoke of the merits of Zhou's proposal but did not say whether Hu would raise it in London.

The United States and Britain have reacted coolly to the proposal.

China, whose economy is still expected by the World Bank to grow 6.5 per cent this year, comes into the G20 summit with more global influence than ever.

But China has sought to dampen expectations that it would bring its financial muscle, particularly its vast hoard of forex reserves, to bear in helping to stabilise the world economy.

Saying that it remains a developing country, China has repeatedly stressed that the best way it can contribute to world economic stability is to keep its own economy going.

One of the most contentious issues at the summit is set to be government stimulus packages, with Germany and France resisting efforts from the United States for nations to follow its lead and step up such measures.

Hu referred to this issue but did not make a definitive stand, with Xinhua citing him as saying that "countries should adopt economic stimulus measures in line with their own situations."

Hu also repeated China's opposition to trade protectionist measures, amid a flurry of such steps by many countries.

China, however, is routinely accused of protectionist policies by the United States and other trade partners.

Hu will be accompanied by a raft of Chinese leaders including Zhou, Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi, Minister of Finance Xie Xuren and Commerce Minister Chen Deming, Xinhua said.

Hu is also due to meet US President Barack Obama on the sidelines of the summit.