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Commodity market regulation

Published on October 31, 2011
Reply by François Baroin, Minister for the Economy, Finance and Industry, to a question in the National Assembly

Paris, October 25 , 2011

First of all, a little historical reminder: when President Nicolas Sarkozy submitted to his partners, at the beginning of the year, agenda items for the French G20 presidency, he suggested discussing commodities and the speculative nature of commodities markets, which is dangerous for the real economy.

Several countries within the G20 itself showed huge surprise or genuine indifference. Today, no one any longer disputes this priority agenda, and everyone supports the French presidency’s position with a view – you’re right – to supervising, regulating and combating speculation.

Additional tension due to the situation in the Arab world and particularly in Libya – the world’s fourth-largest oil exporter – has also aggravated oil price instability. This is another factor slowing down global activity.

We agreed at Bercy [French Finance Ministry] on 14 and 15 October, at the last [G20] finance meeting, on the modus operandi for supervision and regulation; we also agreed on the creation of an oil database.

We hope to go further and be able to propose to the heads of state and government, in Cannes on 3 and 4 November, practical ways of taking swift action, with goals, a method and a timetable. An agreement at the end of the G20 summit is now within reach./.

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