In mid September, the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision (see Update 63) released its “Basel III” rules. José Vinals, director of the IMF’s monetary and capital markets department praised the regulations as “a substantial step forward in addressing the micro-prudential failings in the areas of capital and liquidity buffers in banks”. However, independent commentators disagreed. Martin Wolf of the Financial Times says that “Basel has laboured mightily and brought forth a mouse. Needless to say, the banking industry will insist the mouse is a tiger.” He adds that trebling of capital reserves “sounds tough”, but “trebling almost nothing does not give one very much.”
In the news
In December 2013, the German Development Institute, Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung and Bretton Woods Project, in collaboration with the G-24, hosted a high-level workshop in Berlin to foster an open exchange on the profound changes in the global economy and the implications for global economic governance and its constituent institutions and members.
Last year BRICS' leaders agreed to launch a BRICS development bank. Whether this is considered positive depends in part what questions are being asked. Sameer Dossani of ActionAid International highlights the flaws in the World Bank and IMF, analyses whether a BRICS Bank could be different from these institutions and proposes what it should do and what it should look like.
The Bretton Woods Project is an ActionAid hosted project (UK registered charity no. 274467).