Key quotes from APEC finance ministers’ meeting

KYOTO, Japan (BestGrowthStock) – Finance ministers of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum met to discuss the regional economic outlook and how to achieve balanced and sustainable growth.

The gathering in Kyoto, western Japan, took place amid market concerns over rising global imbalances and competitive currency devaluations in the face of loose U.S. monetary policy and pressure on China to allow its currency to strengthen.

Leaders of the 21-member APEC bloc will meet on November 13-14 in Yokohama, neat Tokyo, while G20 countries will also hold a summit next week in neighboring South Korea.

Following are key quotes from the APEC meeting:

CHINESE VICE FINANCE MINISTER WANG JUN, Nov 6, news conference:

“The quantitative easing monetary policies adopted by the United States will boost the U.S. economy, and boosting the U.S. economy will play an important role in global economic recovery.

“At the same time, the quantitative easing policy has already prompted the concern of emerging nations, and we will continue paying attention to the implementation of this policy …

“We didn’t discuss specific capping targets. The new consensus is to develop a comparative reference plan …

“Newly emerging market economies, including China, will unwaveringly carry out the reforms associated with the macroeconomic goals they have committed to, including reform of exchange rate formation mechanisms.”

U.S. TREASURY SECRETARY TIMOTHY GEITHNER, Nov 6, to reporters

On rebalancing global growth: “What we proposed at G20 and talked about today was how to build a framework for cooperation that will reduce the risk that future growth is imperiled by the remergence of large external imbalances.

“No reasonable person who understands economics would suggest that you could best achieve that adjective by trying to impose quantitative limitations or hard targets.”

JAPANESE FINANCE MINISTER YOSHIHIKO NODA, Nov 6, to reporters

“We of course discussed external imbalances and currencies, and the APEC finance ministers share the G20 nations’ basic stance on those issues…

“The common foundation is being built for countries to address external imbalances, whether they be current account surplus or deficit, as well as stability of the global currency system …

“We did not discuss numerical targets for reducing current account imbalances. We share the basic recognition about what needs to be done to correct external imbalances and the need for multilateral cooperation.”

AUSTRALIAN TREASURER WAYNE SWAN, Nov 5, to reporters

On the U.S. quantitative easing policies: “The global economy has a very big stake in a strong and durable American economy, and the American authorities have obviously taken these steps to strengthen their economy. I think that should be welcomed …

“The Fed of course is taking this action to strengthen growth in America, and I think we can all benefit from that over time …

On global currency movements: “We don’t want to see competitive devaluations occurring in the system. It’s very important that we do over time deal with these global imbalances, and of course some of the structural problems in the system are wider than just exchange rates.”

(Compiled by Michael Watson)

Key quotes from APEC finance ministers’ meeting