IMF Lauds Israel’s Financial Crisis Management


israelFinance ministers and central bank chancellors attending the International Monetary Fund’s annual meeting in Istanbul commended Israel’s financial policies, stable banking system and relatively low unemployment rates during a time of global recession.

Those taking part in yesterday’s sessions praised Bank of Israel Governor Stanley Fischer’s bold decision to increase interest rates in an attempt to curb inflation – a move Israel was the first to make among western economies; as well as his adamant demand the government implement a lateral budget cut.

Israel was rated among the top few countries that have managed their recession wisely according to the IMF, alongside Australia, Japan and Germany, which were also lauded for their ability to stop their markets from slipping further into the recession plaguing world markets.

Nevertheless, Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz’s name was still relatively unknown to conference goers. Steinitz arranged a series of meetings with some of the world’s top financial figures, as with his Dutch, Spanish and Jordanian counterparts.

The International Monetary Fund holds its annual meeting every October. The traditionally Washington-based meeting takes place in an overseas location every third year, with the venue chosen according to a country’s unique contribution to world economy.

Turkey, which is bidding to join the European Union, was chosen to host the 2009 meeting since its economy is considered the most advanced in Eurasia.

Istanbul hosts the largest IMF conference so far, with finance ministers and central bank chancellors from 186 countries taking part, as well as executives representing 5,200 banks and 4,800 companies worldwide.

Overall, some 10,500 people are taking part in the conference.

{Ynet/Yair Israel}