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Recession risks to vex G20 leaders

By Zhang Haizhou (China Daily)

10:33, November 02, 2011

LONDON - Fears of another recession are likely to overshadow the upcoming G20 meeting among leading economic powers in Cannes, France, on Thursday and Friday.

In the days leading up to that event, analysts were saying they are skeptical and pessimistic that leaders will be able to come up with "a cohesive plan" to fight recession. Meanwhile, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, which works to promote the well-being of people around the world, reduced on Monday its forecast for the growth of eurozone economies.

Didier Cossin, professor of finance and governance at the IMD Business School in Geneva, said the risk of a "double-dip recession" occurring in Europe and in the world is "a governance problem, and not an economic" one.

"Obviously there is risk, but whether a double-dip recession happens or not depends on political leaders' ability to make decisions from the top," Cossin said, adding that the European Union "has not shown great governance skills".

Greece's troubles, for example, could have been overcome "a long time ago if decisions had been made quicker", he said.

After rounds of debate, the European Union, composed of 27 countries, devised its latest plan to rescue Greece this past week, long after the country's debt crises began.

"The European economy needs major restructuring for some of its countries," Cossin said.

He added, though, that "implementing such decisions requires strong political will. But, overall, it is difficult to ensure compliance from different governments."

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