"EU Finance Ministers statement on IMF resourcesIt is hoped readers will forgive what may appear to be xenophobia, or nationalism, but:
19 December 2011
EU Member States support a substantial increase in the IMF's resources. These resources will enhance the IMF's capacity to fulfill its systemic responsibilities in support of its global membership, which is especially important given the ongoing economic slowdown and financial market tensions. The IMF’s involvement will be based on normal IMF conditionality.
The EU, and in particular Euro area Member States are fully aware of their special responsibility in the current circumstances. Therefore, on 9 December, euro area Member States have committed to enhanced governance to foster fiscal discipline and deeper integration in the internal market as well as stronger growth, enhanced competitiveness and social cohesion.
Ministers confirmed today that, as part of a broader international effort to improve the adequacy of IMF resources, euro area Member States will provide EUR 150 billion of additional resources through bilateral loans to the Fund's General Resources Account.Burden-sharing among euro area Member States will be based on quota shares resulting from the 2010 quota reform.
The Czech Republic, Denmark, Poland, and Sweden indicated their willingness to take part in the process of reinforcing IMF resources. The United Kingdom has indicated that it will define its contribution early in the new year in the framework of the G20.
For some Member States, commitments will be subject to parliamentary approval.
The EU will also work expeditiously to implement in full the 2010 quota and governance reform of the IMF.
The EU would welcome G20 members and other financially strong IMF members to support the efforts to safeguard global financial stability by contributing to the increase in IMF resources so as to fill global financing gaps." (my emphasis)
So the leaders of some European countries, having screwed up their continent economically, now ask the world to save them. Forgive me, but didn't the leaders of some European countries screw up their continent militarily, about 70+ years ago, for the same empirical aims? So the UK has to join with others to save them - again? To paraphrase: when will they ever learn? More importantly - and perhaps selfishly - when will our politicians learn?
I stand to be corrected, however it appears there are only three 'avenues' by which the eurozone can be 'saved'. One is through the EFSF, which is an avenue not being used this time; the European Central Bank (ECB), which doesn't have the required funds; or the IMF, which providing it can raise the funds, would have. Whether Britain would contribute, via the G20, is the intriguing question and it seems to me that Cameron and Osborne, who have been stating that survival of the eurozone is paramount to our country's well-being, may well use this 'avenue of last resort' in order to appear to be 'good Europeans', thus 'saving face' following their 'belligerence' during 'Events Bruxelles' of 8/9th December - and thus 'getting their feet back under the table'.*
We shall see what transpires.................**
* Of course, if we had 'Referism' and 'Direct Democracy' any payment by our country to another would not be the decision of politicians!
** If I'm proved wrong in my belief that we eventually do contribute via the IMF, then needless to say I shall don sackcloth and ashes, pleading many 'mea culpas' in the process.