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2009年2月16日 (月)

G7声明 反保護主義で協調行動を

The Yomiuri Shimbun (Feb. 16, 2009)

G-7 must work together to avoid protectionism

G7声明 反保護主義で協調行動を(216日付・読売社説)

The Group of Seven nations were unanimous on the need to cooperate with further economic stimulus measures against the global recession, which seems to show no sign of hitting rock bottom.

 歯止めがかからない世界不況に対し、各国がさらなる景気刺激策で協調する必要性が、強く打ち出された。

The joint statement by the G-7 finance ministers and central bank governors who met in Rome on Friday and Saturday made clear their resolve to act together using the full range of policy tools at their disposal to support growth and employment, as well as strengthen financial markets.

 ローマで開かれた先進7か国財務相・中央銀行総裁会議(G7)の共同声明は、成長と雇用を支え、金融市場を安定させるため、政策を総動員する決意を明確にした。

One of the most eye-catching aspects of the statement was the consensus on frontloading and quickly carrying out fiscal policy measures.

 特に、「財政政策を前倒しで迅速に実施する」ことで一致した点が、注目されよう。

Tentacles of the global financial crisis have quickly spread into the real economy. The Japanese, eurozone and U.S. economies are all expected to post negative growth in 2009 for the first time since the end of World War II. Unemployment rates have sharply risen in many countries as the global recession bites.

 金融危機は実体経済を急速に悪化させ、今年、日米欧は戦後初めて、そろってマイナス成長に陥る見通しだ。それに伴い、各国で失業が急増している。

In an indication of the severity of the situation, the joint statement acknowledged that the downturn is expected to persist through most of 2009.

 共同声明が、世界経済の悪化は年内いっぱい続くと認めたほど、現状は厳しい。

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Fiscal policies seen important

Central banks of Japan, Europe and the United States have already come up with ultralow interest rates and quantitative easing policies, but they likely will have only a limited effect. As things stand, the prospect that the economic downturn will continue for some time is becoming a reality.

 日米欧の中央銀行は、歴史的な超低金利政策や量的緩和策に踏み込んでいるが、その効果は限定的だ。不況が長期化するシナリオが現実味を帯びつつある。

With only limited scope for further rate cuts, the G-7 ministers spelled out their recognition of the importance of sound fiscal policies.

 追加利下げ余地が乏しい中、G7は、財政政策を重視する姿勢を鮮明にしたといえよう。

In the United States, where the current crisis started, Congress last week passed an about 800 billion dollars stimulus package, the pillars of which are increased public spending and tax cuts.

 危機の震源地の米国では、議会が公共投資と減税を柱にした8000億ドル(約72兆円)規模の景気対策法案を可決した。

The package, designed to create or save more than 3.5 million jobs, marks the first step in President Barack Obama's plan for getting the United States' economy back on its feet. We hope the stimulus measures will be implemented swiftly.

 350万人の雇用創出を目標とする景気対策法案は、オバマ大統領が掲げる経済再生の第一歩だ。迅速に執行してほしい。

Japan and Europe should work with the United States to coordinate their policies and use every tool at their disposal in the all-out battle to defeat the global recession.

 日本と欧州も米国と協調し、世界不況の封じ込めに総力戦で取り組まなければならない。

Meanwhile, in Japan, a plan for compiling a supplementary budget for fiscal 2009 has surfaced. The nation is crying out for measures that will quickly stimulate the economy. Although such measures could exacerbate the fiscal deficit, we believe they should be positively considered.

 日本では、来年度補正予算案の編成構想が浮上してきた。景気刺激に即効性のある施策が求められる。財政赤字拡大という問題もあるが、前向きに検討すべきだ。

Another side effect of the global recession has been a rise in protectionism--giving preferential treatment to domestically made products--due to governments' excessive emphasis on their domestic economies. To keep this trend in check, the G-7 statement says it "remains committed to avoiding protectionist measures."

 一方、国内景気を重視するあまり、自国産業を優遇する保護貿易主義的傾向が各国で高まりつつある。G7が保護主義の回避を声明に盛り込んだのはこのためだ。

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'Buy American' provision

We are concerned, however, that the U.S. stimulus package still contains a "Buy American" provision, which imposes a general requirement giving priority to purchasing products made in the United States for projects funded in the package.

 米景気対策法案に、米国産品を優先的に購入するという「バイ・アメリカン条項」が残ったことが懸念される。

The "Buy American" requirement will be applied in a manner consistent with U.S. obligations under international treaties. However, the standards under which the provision will be applied are ambiguous. The United States should remove protectionist pressures in line with the G-7 statement.

 法案は国際協定に反しないように運用するとしているが、基準はあいまいだ。米国はG7声明に沿い、保護主義圧力を排除しなければならない。

The joint statement also welcomed China's fiscal measures and the appreciation of the Chinese yuan. It showed the G-7 countries' expectation that China will fulfill its role in the global economy.

 声明はまた、中国の財政出動と人民元の上昇を歓迎した。中国の役割への期待を示すものだ。

The second financial summit will be held in April, with India, China and other countries sitting at the table. The summit's success will hinge on whether G-7 countries can finish writing a prescription that will cure the global recession.

 中国、インドなどを加えた2回目の金融サミットが4月に開かれる。G7がそれまでに効果的な処方箋(せん)を書けるかどうかが、サミットの成否のカギとなろう。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Feb. 16, 2009)

20092160147  読売新聞)

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