British leader issues call at UN for new financial order to end market turmoil

Prime Minister Gordon Brown of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

26 September 2008 – The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom today called for a new global financial system to bring an end to the current economic turmoil, laying out five principles on which the order should be based as he addressed the General Assembly’s annual high-level debate.

“This has been an era of global prosperity. It has been an era also of global turbulence,” Gordon Brown said at United Nations Headquarters in New York.

To bring an end to the culture of irresponsibility, “we must now build a new global financial order founded on transparency, not opacity; rewarding success, not excess; responsibility, not impunity; and which is global, not national.”

He proposed five key principles for all nations to abide by: transparency and improved accounting standards; sound banking practices and more effective regulation; increased responsibility to be taken by senior management; integrity; and oversight of global capital flows.

Mr. Brown also urged urgent action to tackle what he called the “global scramble for resources” by addressing the problem of high commodity prices and “taking tough decisions on energy security and climate change.” To this end, he said he will host a global energy summit in London to push for agreement on key issues later this year.

Cooperation among nations is more important than ever, he said, as it is the only vehicle through which “we can make the most of the world’s scarce resources and harness the power of our ever great interdependence for our common good.”

Resorting to isolationism and protectionism is not the solution to the crisis holding the world in its clutches, the Prime Minister said. “It is only by maintaining our open, flexible and dynamic economies that we can best secure people’s jobs, homes and standards of living in a global age.”


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