Canada's Prime Minister Stephen Harper attends a session at the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos January 28, 2010. (Xinhua/Reuters Photo) In a special address at the ongoing World Economic Forum annual meeting, South Korean President Lee Myung-bak said the global economy has just gone through a period of crisis and is now showing tentative signs of recovery.
World leaders on Thursday called for caution in designing economic exit strategies as the global economic recovery is still "tentative."
Lee, whose country will host the next Group of 20 (G20) summit in November, called on G20 members to consider implementing an "exit strategy" for the unprecedented fiscal and monetary stimulus programs adopted by many countries to deal with the crisis, but urged them to "tread gently."
"One of the tasks of the G20 will be to coordinate the transition to a more normal policy stance once the appropriate conditions are in place," he said.
Lee added that it was time for the G20 to set the post-crisis agenda, and to build the platform that would ensure sustained and balanced growth for the world economy in the months and years ahead.
"The G20 this year will continue its efforts to overcome the consequences of the global financial crisis and to re-double its efforts in coordinating policies toward recovery," he told top business executives and government officials attending the annual gathering in the Swiss ski resort.
Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper also urged the G20 to discuss ways to exit the stimulus investments.
"While it is absolutely too soon to abandon stimulus programs, it is not too soon to think about a strategy to exit them," said he.
Meanwhile, Harper called on all countries to adopt national financial regulations sufficiently strong to avoid a repeat of the global crisis.
He said that these regulations should be bolstered by an international peer review mechanism. "If inadequate regulation is not addressed," he said, "I believe the consequences could be worse than before the crisis."
Thus, he warned that financial regulation "must have the right purposes and must not be excessive."
Chinese Vice Premier Li Keqiang said the crisis is not over yet and the foundation for economic recovery is still weak.
"Continued cooperation among countries is needed to avoid twists and turns and reduce risks in the course of recovery," Li said in a keynote speech on Thursday.
According to Li, China would keep the continuity and stability of its macro-economic policies, continue to follow a proactive fiscal policy and moderately easy monetary policy and make its policies better targeted and more flexible in response to new circumstances.
Participants at the Jan. 27-31 event include more than 1,400 top-level executives from the world's leading companies, some 30 heads of state or government, more than 60 government ministers, and more than 100 top officials from international organizations and nongovernmental organizations.
Issues high on the meeting's agenda include what lessons the world should draw from the recent economic crisis, how to promote a stable recovery, world negotiations on climate change, and the reconstruction of earthquake-ravaged Haiti.
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