Transcripts of the monetary policymaking body of the Federal Reserve from 2002–2008.

Just to follow up on your note, Mr. Chairman, I spent four years as the senior trade negotiator with all four of these countries, and I’d just like to comment on their importance to us. Mexico is obvious. It’s a national security risk. We’re interlinked economically. They have a sophisticated central bank and a very good central bank governor, and I think that would be number one on the list. Singapore is unique. I doubt that Singapore would ever go to the IMF. It would be beneath Lee Kuan Yew’s dignity. It is a vital link in terms of that sphere of the world. You made the case earlier, or at least Nathan made a case, as to the uniqueness of Singapore. In terms of Brazil, I’d say that is the dodgiest of the lot. However, we should remember that 40 percent of the GDP of Latin America south of the Yucatan is produced by that one country and roughly 60 percent of the population is represented by that one country. It has made significant progress since Cardoso was president, and it is a robust economy relatively speaking. Every economy in Latin America borders upon it. It does have a unique negotiating history—and Tim knows this as well as I do, having spent a lot of time negotiating with them—but I would say that it is a critical part of our hemisphere and that is the justification for including them in the package. Finally, we have been trying to negotiate a free trade agreement with Korea for some time. Korea is an underrepresented country in terms of discussions about developments in that part of the globe, and yet it is inordinately successful. I would argue that it is also a strong case to make. The only other country that I would include under the rubric that we might ever consider is Chile. Even though it is tiny, its representation is important and its nature unique. I think you could justify doing this by virtue of their immediate impact on our economy, their unique role in our hemisphere, and the fact that I doubt that they would want to go to the IMF in the first place. Therefore, it is complementary to the package you announced earlier. My only discomfort in the discussion would be the idea of allocating to the Foreign Currency Subcommittee the authority to approve additional countries. As to the supplement for these four countries that has been proposed, I would be in favor of that. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

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