The world's financial leaders see a number of threats facing a
global economy still on an uneven road to recovery with U.S. and
European officials worrying that Greece will default on its
ministers and central bank governors ended three days of
meetings in Washington determined to work toward "a more
robust, balanced and job-rich economy" while admitting
there are risks in reaching that objective, the steering
committee of the International Monetary Fund said in its
resolve Athens' debt crisis, Greek Finance Minister Yanis
Varoufakis held a series of talks with other finance officials
on the sidelines of the meetings. The focus now shifts to Riga,
Latvia, where European Union finance ministers meet next week.
The head of the
European Central Bank, Mario Draghi, said it was
"urgent" to resolve the current dispute between Greece
and its creditors. He said that while the international finance
system had been strengthened since the 2008 crisis, a Greek
default would still put the global economy into
"unchartered waters" with its effect hard to estimate.
reporters he did not want to even contemplate the chance of a
Greek default on its debt. But French Finance Minister Michel
Sapin said he thought any damage would be confined to Greece
because euro zone countries had established measures to protect
themselves from any spillover effects.
assure financial markets, which fluctuated considerably on
Friday over the possibility of a Greek default, Sapin said
nothing had changed on the issue as a result of the weekend
meetings. He said it was up to the Greek government to present
credible, assessable solutions to its economic problems.
solution to the Greek debt crisis is in Greece," he said.
The head of the
IMF, Christine Lagarde, who had rejected suggestions that the
IMF might delay Greek debt repayments, said she had constructive
talks with Varoufakis and that the objective remained the same:
to restore stability for Greek finances and assure an economic
negotiating with the IMF and European authorities to receive the
final 7.2 billion euro ($7.8 billion) installment of its
financial bailout. Creditors are demanding that Greece produce a
credible overhaul before releasing the money.
The country has
relied on international loans since 2010. Without more bailout
money Greece could miss payments due to the IMF in May and run
out of cash to pay salaries and pensions.
negotiations over Greece's debt have proved contentious, but all
sides have expressed optimism that the differences can be
A number of
countries directed criticism toward the U.S. for the failure of
Congress to pass legislation needed to put into effect reforms
that would boost the agency's capacity to make loans and
increase the voting power of such emerging economic powers as
China, Brazil and India.
Carstens, the head of Mexico's central bank and chair of the IMF
policy panel, said "pretty much all of the members
expressed deep disappointment" that a failure of Congress
to act is blocking implementation of the reforms. The IMF panel
directed IMF officials to explore whether interim solutions
could be put in place until Congress acts.
ministers urged central banks including the U.S. Federal Reserve
to clearly communicate future policy changes to avoid triggering
unwanted turbulence in financial markets.
meetings of the IMF and its sister organization, the World Bank,
take place Oct. 9-10 in Lima, Peru.