G20 will agree to boost IMF resources: Van Rompuy

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The world's biggest economies will boost the International Monetary Fund's resources to help the IMF tackle the European debt crisis, European Union President Herman Van Rompuy said on Friday.

Earlier, officials at the G20 summit in Cannes had said there was a "knife edge" debate between members about whether they would be allowed to increase the fund's war chest through voluntary contributions.

Washington had reservations, but other non-eurozone powers saw boosting the IMF's ability to intervene in Europe as a way to help the continent through its sovereign debt crisis and protect the broader world economy.

"The G20 is ready to assign additional resources to the IMF and to put them rapidly into action, if necessary," Van Rompuy told reporters in Cannes as G20 leaders left their last summit working session for a final working lunch.

"The finance ministers will define concrete options at their next meeting."

Van Rompuy said the plan was to create a kind of "trust fund" within the IMF, which the body could use to make loans to eurozone members, in coordination with the European Union's own European Financial Stability Facility.

© 2011 AFP

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