OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canada will chair a meeting of finance ministers and central bankers from the Group of Seven major industrialized nations in Washington next month, Finance Minister Jim Flaherty said on Wednesday.
The International Monetary Fund meets in Washington on October 8-9 and the G7, which Canada chairs, will meet on the sidelines of that gathering. The G7 session is expected to be informal, with no final communique.
Flaherty strongly suggested the G7 meeting would tackle the question of global currencies, in particular widespread unhappiness at what many see as China’s policy of keeping the yuan artificially weak.
“I have been speaking with some of our colleagues in the G7 as we prepare for meetings next week in Washington. We will have a G7 meeting there of finance ministers and central bankers which I will chair,” he told reporters.
“Currency issues are major issues in the world. They distort trading relationships ... We believe that currencies, including the Asian currencies, including the Chinese currency, need to be more flexible so that our trading relationships are more rational,” Flaherty said.
The Group of 20 major economies is now the main global economic forum. G20 finance ministers and central bank chiefs will meet in Gyeongju, South Korea, on October 22-23.
Reporting by Louise Egan, writing by David Ljunggren; editing by Rob Wilson