August 21, 2006

A global monetary fund needs foremost to go global

Sir, we agree with Peter Costello that “The global monetary fund needs to reform its quotas”, August 21, but we do not believe this is achievable by reshuffling some local interests. In order to globalize the International Monetary Fund what it really needs is to get free from many of the constraints imposed by outdated geographical considerations. In this respect the world has to find ways of providing the Fund with a representation that is more independent from borders, perhaps even giving a Chair to the Constituency of the International Rovers by which we mean all those workers, skilled or unskilled, legal or illegal, who nowadays represent jointly one of the largest economies of the world.

It is also somewhat contradictory with democracy being promoted around the globe to still hear that the voting rights in multinational organizations should be based on some dubious relative economic weights. Dubious? Yes indeed! Who says that it is the gross national product of a country that should be determinant? What about the net results (quality of life), what about the balance sheet (market capitalization), what about cross border trade, what about idea generations, what about other real power sources?

When I was an Executive Director in one of the international finance organizations, the World Bank, 2002-2004, what most worried me was how extremely underrepresented “Mother Earth” really was. It behooves us more to get a fix on that.