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Rhodes on risk and reform

Author: Peter Lee

    Last month Euromoneytalked to William Rhodes, vice-chairman of Citigroup and Citibank and a veteran of emerging-markets crisis resolution since 1982, during a brief stop in London.

Rhodes is a friend of finance ministers and central bank governors across Latin America, Asia and central and eastern Europe and offers his views on the progress of financial reform in key emerging markets, identifies the world's trouble spots and pitches into the debates on burden-sharing and the new financial architecture that have raged in recent months.

Could you identify some of the issues that investors have expressed concern about recently?

Obviously the change of government in Argentina, how things are coming along in Asia, and the state of the US economy. The US economy has been the motor for growth in emerging markets. There was a time after 1997 when everyone thought high growth in Japan was essential to pull Asia through. In fact, the US provided that. There are some people who are still concerned about Japan because it is not clear that the consumer is back yet, and there is a need to finalize the restructuring of Japan's financial sector.

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