Finance Ministers from the G8 leading industrialised nations have ended their meeting in Russia with a positive statement on global growth.
They believe economic growth will again be good this year but they say that high and volatile energy prices posed a threat. They also called for more progress in trade liberalisation negotiations. The talks in Moscow marked Russia’s first turn as G8 president and focused primarily on concern over the cost and reliability of supplies of oil and gas. Russia is one of the world’s biggest energy providers but a recent row with Ukraine, in which it closed the gas taps, has triggered ill-ease among others in the wealthy club. The diplomatically phrased final communique made no reference to that issue but officials say they are keen for Russia itself to allow more foreign investment in its energy sector and to loosen the grip of the Gazprom monopoly.