An expensive trip

An expensive trip

Bureaucrat: Is London still pricey? Hu Jintao: I spent $40 billion in one day.

The G20 in London was China’s coming out party as a top-tier power. But as everyone knows London is an expensive place to have a party.

For China’s president, Hu Jintao that meant footing an IMF bill. This saw China give an additional $40 billion in contributions to the Fund.

So, what does $40 billion buy you at an international conference nowadays?

The G20’s closing statement supported “even-handed” IMF economic surveillance, called for merit-based appointments of IMF and World Bank heads, and pledged to hasten reforms to make both agencies more representative. China is also hoping it shareholding in the IMF will rise to 3.99% from 3.80%.

America has suggested it will give the IMF $100 billion. But as the wags have pointed out Uncle Sam may need to be lent that sum by the Chinese.

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