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Interview with G-20 chairman Paul Martin

Paul Martin, chairman of the G-20, speaks on the dangers of hosting global economic summits in light of the new wave of terrorism. He also talks about the upcoming conference in Ottawa, trade finance, and the economic side of the war on terrorism.

Since protestors against global capitalism caused destruction and damage in Seattle during the World Trade Organization meeting, hosting global economic summits has become an unenviable responsibility. The new wave of terrorism makes it outright dangerous. But the urgent need to talk in the face of a worrying simultaneous slowdown in the economies of the US, Europe, Japan and Asia prompted Canada's finance minister, Paul Martin, to offer Ottawa as the site of this month's mini Bretton Woods meetings. On the schedule are meetings of G-20 finance ministers and central bank governors, the International Monetary and Financial Committee (IMFC), the IMF, and the Development Committee of the IMF and the World Bank.

In late October, on a day when Canada's finance ministry was evacuated because of a false security scare, Martin, who is chairman of the G-20, spoke to Euromoney's David Clarke.

What your expectations for the events?

We welcome these meetings. It is very important that the world not only gets back to business but that it demonstrates unequivocally that it is back in business, and that the terrorists are not going to bring things to a halt.

The meetings of the IMFC in terms of global economic growth; of the Development Committee in terms of dealing with the problem of poverty; and of the G20, which brings together not only the majority of the world's rich but also the majority of the world's poor, are very important in dealing with the fundamental issues of our time.

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