Bloomberg News

Miliband Suggests Labour Party Would Block More IMF Resources

January 26, 2012

Jan. 26 (Bloomberg) -- Ed Miliband, Britain’s opposition leader, suggested he’d vote with euroskeptic rebels in Prime Minister David Cameron’s Conservatives against increasing U.K. contributions to the International Monetary Fund.

“We’ll look at any vote there is on the IMF,” Miliband told The House Magazine. “The reason we’ve taken the position we have on the IMF is you can’t have a sticking-plaster solution to the euro zone’s problems. Seventeen countries of the euro zone have enough firepower to provide the backing for the euro- zone countries.”

The comments echo those of Cameron, who said today that Germany and the European Central Bank should do more to end the debt crisis affecting Europe. Without Labour’s support, Cameron may fail to muster a majority in Parliament to back any international agreement to approve giving the Washington-based lender more resources.

Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne said on Jan. 16 he will seek parliamentary approval to expand the resources of the IMF if it puts forward a convincing case for more money. The U.K. says the IMF’s role is to support countries not currencies.

Miliband said in the interview that the ECB rather than the IMF should act as the main backstop for the euro. Labour voted in July against increasing the U.K. contribution to the IMF.

In October, Cameron overcame the largest ever Conservative Party rebellion over the European Union as a quarter of his lawmakers voted in favor of a referendum on British membership of the bloc. Some Tory lawmakers say they want Britain to leave the EU.

--Editors: Eddie Buckle, Leon Mangasarian

#<879239.2379687.2.1.95.14779.25># -0- Jan/26/2012 21:00 GMT

To contact the reporter on this story: Gonzalo Vina in London at gvina@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James Hertling at jhertling@bloomberg.net


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