International financial situation
Versailles, October 28, 2008
I’d like to tell you how happy I am to be having a meeting with Gordon Brown, the British Prime Minister, with whom, I must say, we’ve been working hand in hand since well before the start of the crisis. We’re trying to coordinate our positions. Together we’re trying to get Europe to adopt a common position and together trying to find solutions to the historic, unprecedented financial crisis the world is experiencing.
I want to tell Gordon Brown how pleased I am to be having this meeting with him, to be working once again with him to prepare the 7 November summit so that the 27 EU countries have the same message and same proposals at the summit in Washington on 15 November. We both want concrete decisions to come out of it so that the causes of the crisis we’re experiencing never recur.
When I was in Britain, at the invitation of the Queen and, of course, with Gordon Brown, I told him that the "entente cordiale" between the British and the French wasn’t enough. I proposed an "entente amicale" and Gordon talked about the "entente formidable".
I want to say that we are working really hand in hand to extricate the world and Europe from the crisis in which we find ourselves. I was very interested to see Gordon Brown’s proposals on the future role of the IMF which is one of the topics we’re going to discuss, because it isn’t simply financial regulation and the complete overhaul of a system, but also global governance as a whole which we’ll have to deal with. Gordon Brown’s got some exciting ideas on this. Personally, I think we need to find the ways and means for the IMF to have more resources to support a number of States. I have the emerging countries particularly in mind. On 7 November I’ll propose – and I’ll be talking to Gordon Brown about this – that the European Union itself, which has a facility worth €12 billion from which to grant loans to Member States with balance of payments difficulties, raise the ceiling to at least €20 billion to increase our ability to respond to the crisis.
This will be a long-term task. The UK will be chairing the G-20 next year and other summits will have to be organized after the Washington one. We are keen to pool our experience and defend what we firmly believe is necessary to find a solution and naturally avoid the economic recession going on too long, so that we find the ways and means of ending the financial crisis, of ending the economic crisis.
Welcome Gordon Brown./.