International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.
Dr. Yaga Venugopal Reddy was Governor, Reserve Bank of India, from 2003 to 2008. Subsequently, he was a member of the UN Commission of Experts to the President of the UN General Assembly on Reforms of the International Monetary and Financial System. Dr. Reddy was also a member of an informal international group of prominent persons on international monetary reforms (Palais Royal Initiative). He is Professor Emeritus at the University of Hyderabad and Distinguished Professor at the Indian Institute for Technology (IIT) Madras, as well as an honorary fellow of the London School of Economics and Political Science, and is on the Advisory Board of the Institute for New Economic Thinking (INET).
Former Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund, Michel Camdessus, is Honorary Governor of the Banque de France and Personal Representative of the French President, Jacques Chirac, for the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD). He is a member of the Commission for Africa, which is chaired by the British Prime Minister, Tony Blair.
This paper focuses on the developing countries, which accounted for nearly half the value of those surpluses, were apparently unable to find sufficiently profitable investments at home that overcame market and political risk. The United States a decade ago likely could not have run up today’s near $800 billion annual deficit for the simple reason that we could not have attracted the foreign savings to finance it. In 1995, for example, total cross-border saving was less than $300 billion. The long-term updrift in this broader swath of unconsolidated deficits and mostly offsetting surpluses of economic entities has been persistent but gradual for decades, probably generations. However, the component of that broad set that captures only the net foreign financing of the imbalances of the individual US economic entities, our current account deficit, increased from negligible in the early 1990s to 6.2 percent of our GDP by 2006.
… here is a case in which it is difficult to know what to say about the recent past. There possibly has been another major change in the interpretation of the theory in roughly the last decade … but it is hard to know, for sure.
Ladies and gentlemen, Governors, I should first say, I am deeply grateful to the Per Jacobsson Foundation and to the BIS for providing me with this opportunity. I am honored to have been invited to deliver this Per Jacobsson Foundation Lecture, and by the presence of so many distinguished guests.
International Monetary Fund. Communications Department
It is a great honor to deliver the Per Jacobsson Foundation Lecture, and I thank the organizers for inviting me. Per Jacobsson, a Swede, was the third Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), serving from 1956 to 1963. During his tenure, the Fund supported the return to convertibility of the major European currencies, increased its resources by securing the General Arrangements to Borrow, and established the Compensatory Financing Facility to help member countries cope with temporary fluctuations in international payments.
A year ago this time, in early October of 2008, the world was on the edge of a financial and economic abyss. Those very close to the events in the financial sector were terrified. The world at large had not yet fully comprehended the magnitude of the disaster. The October 2008 World Economic Outlook had predicted that global GDP growth would have attained 2.7 percent in 2008 and would be 1.9 percent in 2009. Compare that to the 2.1 percent realized in 2008 and the most recent projection of -2.3 percent for 2009. Projections have been revised upward over the last few weeks, but the loss of output in 2009 will still be much greater than what was projected a year ago. The real point, however, is that it could have been much worse. What happened on Wall Street in September of 2008 was the financial equivalent of the Cuban missile crisis of 1962. We came very close to a complete meltdown … as the world had come very close to nuclear war in 1962. But the meltdown did not take place—a very vigorous policy response in the major economies and concerted action by the major central banks forestalled a much worse disaster.1
The October 2009 Per Jacobsson Lecture, delivered in Istanbul in conjunction with the 2009 Annual Meetings of the IMF and World Bank, examined the issue of longer-run growth prospects for the global economy following the recent global economic crisis. Will the world be able, in the five to ten years after the crisis abates, to return to the very rapid kind of economic growth sustained in the five years leading up to it? Noting that recent debate on the topic has focused on demand-side factors, neglecting the key area of supply-side sources of growth, Kemal Dervis, the 2009 Per Jacobsson lecturer, argues that contrary to the majority view that limited, below-trend growth is likely to prevail for some time, there is probably potential for very rapid growth in the world economy over the coming decade, thanks to strong supply-side factors. Whether such growth can be realized depends, however, on demand-side management both at the national level and through improved global macroeconomic policy coordination.
Jean-Claude Trichet is a former President of the European Central Bank, a post that he held from 2003 to 2011. He is currently chairman of the Group of Thirty (a position he has held since 2011) and of the Board of Directors of the Bruegel Institute (since 2012). He is also a member of the Institut de France (Académie des Sciences Morales et Politiques).