US President Obama has given a positive assessment of the G20 summit, reporting real progress despite talk of deep divisions.
Economic policy disputes have seen weeks of verbal jousting between the US and China. But in Seoul, there are signs of a desire, at least, to try to bury the hatchet.
“We agreed that exchange rates must reflect economic realities,” Obama told a news conference. “Just as the major advanced economies need to keep working to preserve stability among reserve currencies, emerging economies need to allow for currencies that are market-driven. This is something I raised yesterday with President Hu of China and we will continue to closely watch the appreciation of China’s currency. All of us need to avoid actions that perpetuate imbalances and give countries an undue advantage over one another.”
By vowing to move towards market-determined exchange rates and shun competitive devaluations, the G20 is seeking to recapture a unity forged in the economic crisis two years ago.