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BRICs stand by demand for bigger share of IMF votes

October 3rd, 2009

BricThe leading emerging BRIC nations maintain their demand for a 7 percent shift in voting power to developing countries at the International Monetary Fund, Brazil’s Finance Minister Guido Mantega said on Saturday.

He was speaking a week after the G20 meeting of leading world economies in Pittsburgh where the BRICs had agreed the shift to developing countries should be 5 percent.

“What was agreed in Pittsburgh is just the start of a bigger change,” Mantega told reporters after meeting with his BRIC counterparts at the semiannual meeting of the IMF in Istanbul.

“Five percent is the minimum, we decided to continue fighting for 7 percent,” he said. “We still think we are under represented.”

He also said the BRIC nations will not contribute any permanent funding for a IMF crisis facility, the New Arrangements to Borrow (NAB), unless they gain a greater say.

For the first time ever, the BRICs — Brazil, Russia, India and China — contributed resources to an IMF crisis fund this year.

“If our conditions are not accepted, I think it will be difficult for us to continue contributing to the NAB,” Mantega said.

The BRIC nations want more say over how the resources in the NAB are spent.

Mantega said U.S. Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner took part in the meeting of the BRICs on Saturday as he did at previous BRIC meetings.

“There is convergence between the BRICs and the United States has shown sympathy to that,” Mantega said.

“I would say that the United States is a supporter of greater, rather than smaller reforms (of the IMF),” he said. “The Europeans are the ones that will lose the most.”

Mantega also proposed that the G24 groups of developing nations be given a seat at the G20 of leading global economic countries, which has supplanted the G7 of rich countries since the global financial crisis erupted.

(Reporting by Axel Bugge)

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