ESCAP Distinguished Person Lecture Professor Robert Mundell Nobel Laureate in Economics on "Global Currency: Dollar, Euro, Renminbi",

7 Dec 2011
Bangkok, Thailand

Nobel Laureate Professor Robert Mundell will deliver the ESCAP Distinguished Person Lecture on the topic “Global Currency: Dollar, Euro, Renminbi” on 7 December from 1530 to 1700 hours, at the United Nations Conference Centre, Bangkok.

This event is a part of the ESCAP Distinguished Person Lecture Series in which talks have been delivered by Professor Joseph Stiglitz, Nobel Laureate (August 2009), Sir Richard Jolly and Dr. Louis Emmerij (November 2009), Professor Amartya Sen, Nobel Laureate (July 2010), and President Haruhiko Kuroda of the Asian Development Bank (November 2010).

Professor Mundell is widely regarded as a pioneer of modern international economics and the intellectual father of the euro. His contributions range from the ‘Mundell-Fleming model’ which dominates practical considerations of monetary and fiscal policy in open economies to the theory of optimal currency areas which laid the groundwork for the introduction of the euro. His writings include over a hundred articles in scientific journals and seminal books on the international monetary system and the theory of inflation and interest. At the same time, he has been a close advisor to major international organizations and a number of governments and monetary authorities across the world, including in the Asia-Pacific region.

His lecture on the global currency, an important topic which has gained renewed attention with the global financial crisis, will address the need to bring greater coherence to the international monetary system and stability among major currencies, which among others, will further facilitate international trade. In this regard, he has argued for greater stability in the dollar-euro exchange rate, while calling for a more prominent role of the Chinese currency and its inclusion in the SDR, the international reserve basket held by the IMF.

Moreover, his lecture will be of particular interest to policy makers and experts in this region, as the expanding role of the Asia-Pacific region in the global economy will inevitable carry its financial and monetary implications. In addition, while regional economic integration in Asia-Pacific has been limited to preferential trade agreements and emergency liquidity provisions such as the Chiang Mai Initiative, there is a prevailing view that greater financial and monetary cooperation would further benefit the region.

The ESCAP Distinguished Person Lecture is therefore an unusual opportunity to benefit from Professor Mundell’s rich insights on the global economy, including the euro area sovereign debt troubles, the international monetary system, and regional economic integration challenges.

Dr. Noeleen Heyzer, Under Secretary General of the United Nations and Executive Secretary of ESCAP, will give welcoming remarks and moderate the open discussions following Professor Mundell’s lecture.