Inside The IMF – Cyprus Is Russia

You are aware that as of Sept 6, 2012 Russia has agreed to sell as much oil to China as they care to purchase – outside the use of the “U.S dollar” right?

Some believe that both countries are also hoarding as much gold as they can as well  – in preparation for a new trade system outside the use of U.S dollars.

According to the World Gold Council, Russia has more than doubled its gold reserves in the past five years. Putin has taken advantage of the financial crisis to build the world’s fifth-biggest gold pile in a handful of years, and is buying about half a billion dollars’ worth every month. As the U.S FED continues to print, countries in the East are moving further and further away from use of USD in trade. Can you really blame them?

I mean think about it. Why on earth should a person in China need to exchange the money in his pocket to USD  – before purchasing a barrel of oil from his neighboring country Russia?

In any case – Russia is  deeply invested in Cyprus ( with considerable interests in its offshore gas supplies, and billions of dollars sitting in Cyprus banks) not to mention the largest supplier of oil to Western Europe.

If Cyprus gets bailed out or assisted solely by Russia – this will be a massive slap in the face to the IMF – and would have significant geopolitical implications.

I’m no investigative journalist – but the more I dig the clearer the picture becomes.

No wonder the IMF is involved.

Inside The IMF – U.S Pulls Strings

The U.S. government has by far the largest share of votes in both the IMF and World Bank and, along with its closest allies, effectively controls their operations with 18% of the votes in the IMF and 15% in the World Bank.

Together, the United States, Germany, Japan, the U.K. and France control about 40% of the shares in both institutions.The rest of the shares spread among 175 other member governments, some holding just a tiny number of votes, so in a general sense – the United States is effectively in charge.

Currently Timothy F. Geithner is listed as the U.S Governor to the IMF – with our good friend Ben Bernanke listed as “alternate”.

The IMF makes sure that U.S. allies get the financial support they need to stay in power, abuses of human rights, labor, and the environment notwithstanding; that big banks get paid back, no matter how irresponsible their loans may have been; and that other governments continually reduce barriers to the operations of U.S. business in their countries, whether or not this conflicts with the economic needs of their own people.

The IMF lends money to governments. Because many governments, especially governments of poor countries, are often in dire need of loans and cannot readily obtain funds through financial markets, they turn to The IMF . And if the IMF will not loan to a country, international banks certainly won’t. As a result, the IMF wields great power, and is able to insist that governments adopt certain policies as a condition for receiving funds. As seen through the economic and environmental fall out after IMF intervention in Ecuador in 2001 – 2003 (more on this later).

In some way this could be perceived as “a loan of last resort/loan sharking” – considering that the country accepting the loan is now in scenario where the IMF can dictate repayment terms (at unrealistic interest rates) in order to impose even greater influence – ( In Argentina for example –  The Buenos Aires water system was sold for pennies to Enron, as was a pipeline going from Argentina to Chile) as corporate America swoops in and buys prime assets on the cheap.

Inside The IMF – The Darker Side

I’m sure that most  of you have heard of the organization The IMF – but likely not in this light. I have been researching this for some time now, and over the next couple posts hope to share with you what I’ve learned.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is an international organization that was initiated in 1944 at the Bretton Woods Conference and formally created in 1945 by 29 member countries. The IMF’s stated goal was to stabilize exchange rates and assist the reconstruction of the world’s international payment system post-World War II.

Countries contribute money to a pool through a quota system from which countries with payment imbalances can borrow funds temporarily. Through this activity and others such as surveillance of its members’ economies and policies, the IMF works to improve the economies of its member countries.

The IMF describes itself as “an organization of 188 countries, working to foster global monetary cooperation, secure financial stability, facilitate international trade, promote high employment and sustainable economic growth, and reduce poverty around the world.” The organization’s stated objectives are to promote international economic cooperation, international trade, employment, and exchange rate stability, including by making financial resources available to member countries to meet balance of payments needs. Its headquarters are in Washington, D.C., United States.

Voting power in the IMF is based on a quota system. Each member has a number of “basic votes” (each member’s number of basic votes equals 5.502% of the total votes), plus one additional vote for each Special Drawing Right (SDR) of 100,000 of a member country’s quota. The Special Drawing Right is the unit of account of the IMF and represents a claim to currency. It is based on a basket of key international currencies.

Ok so we get it – an international financial group all pitching in to a communal “fund” where the more that your country contributes the greater the number of votes (and influence) is given.

I wonder if you’ve already got some idea as to where I’m going with this.

Any idea of which country is the largest contributor and in turn receives the most votes/influence?

Next in the series: Inside The IMF – U.S Pulls Strings