Clashes over policy at Shanghai G20 meeting
By Robin Harding in Shanghai and Tom Mitchell in Beijing
Financial Times, London
Friday, February 26, 2016
Finance ministers and central bankers clashed on Friday over issues ranging from the need for global stimulus to negative interest rates, suggesting they were unlikely to agree on "bold" measures urged by the International Monetary Fund earlier this week.
"The debt-financed growth model has reached its limits," Wolfgang Schäuble, German finance minister, said on the sidelines of a two-day G20 meeting in Shanghai. "We therefore do not agree with a G20 fiscal package as some argue . ... There are no short-cuts that aren't reforms."
Mr Schäuble also expressed his scepticism about further monetary easing in the eurozone, saying policy was "extremely accommodative to the point that it may even be counterproductive in terms of negative side effects on banks, policies and growth."
Michel Sapin, French finance minister, said a co-ordinated boost to demand was a long way off.
"We are absolutely not talking about a global fiscal stimulus package," he said. "We're not there at all. In France we don't have the means to do this just yet. Other countries have more capacity and they can use this capacity to continue to support global growth."
Such countries include Germany and China, whose central bank governor said Beijing had additional scope for monetary and fiscal stimulus.
Others expressed disappointment at the apparent lack of urgency in Shanghai. "I don't think this is a meeting where there will be some big decision," said one G20 official who asked not to be identified. ...
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