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G-20 pledges to hold back from currency warfare

Published on Feb 16, 2013 11:21 PM
Britain's Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne (C) prepares for a family photo during a meeting of G-20 finance ministers and central bank governors at the Manezh Exhibition Centre in Moscow on Feb 16, 2013. The G-20 nations declared on Saturday there would be no 'currency war' and deferred plans to set new debt-cutting targets in an indication of concern about the fragile state of the world economy. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

MOSCOW (AFP) - Group of 20 (G-20) finance ministers on Saturday moved to calm fears of looming "economic warfare" on the currency markets, pledging in their final communique that they would not target specific foreign exchange rates or devalue currencies to make them more competitive.

The jitters - similar to previous disputes with China - have been set off by Japan's plan of monetary easing to boost inflation and activity by reducing the value of the yen under new Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

"We will refrain from competitive devaluation. We will not target our exchange rates for competitive purposes," said the final communique after the G-20 finance meeting in Moscow under Russia's presidency.

It echoed a similar recent statement by the Group of Seven (G-7) richest nations which, like the G-20 statement, was also approved by Japan, whose monetary policy has been vehemently criticised by the West in recent weeks.

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