Leaders hope to tackle currency issue at G20 summit

World leaders meeting in Seoul have a tough tangle of issues to sort through.

SEOUL // The leaders of 19 countries plus the EU, meeting in Seoul next Thursday and Friday, face a complex web of issues that their aides are discussing behind closed doors right down to the opening session.

Currency reform, the single most difficult issue, impinges on other major areas of discussion. These include: reform of the IMF, as agreed to by financial ministers and central bank governors; the establishment of a global financial safety net; reduction of deficits; and endorsement of Basel III, the deal reached in September by the Basel committee on banking supervision that calls for banks to double their ready capital in case of sudden losses.

The summit hopes to go beyond the platitudes of the previous Group of 20 (G20) leading and emerging economies summit in Toronto in June, where leaders paid pious heed to the need to narrow the development gap on the way to rebalanced global growth and achievement by 2015 of the UN's lofty Millennium Development Goals.

SaKong Il, the chairman of the Seoul summit organising committee, expects "detailed policy recommendation for each individual G20 member country."

The summit in Toronto was "an interim meeting that reviewed the progress made so far" Mr SaKong says.

Now leaders need to make good "on their previous commitments", notably an increase in global output by almost $4 trillion (Dh14.69tn) and the creation of 52 million new jobs, lifting 90 million people out of poverty.

As evidence of the reliance the delegates in Toronto placed on Seoul, Mr SaKong notes the final Toronto declaration "mentioned the Seoul summit eight times".