Brazil minister absent from G20 meeting in South Korea

Brazil`s finance minister, Guido Mantega, and central bank chief, Henrique Meirelles, will not be attending the G20 meeting of their peers in South Korea that starts on Friday.

Last Updated: Oct 21, 2010, 00:45 AM IST

Brasilia: Brazil`s finance minister,
Guido Mantega, and central bank chief, Henrique Meirelles,
will not be attending the G20 meeting of their peers in South
Korea that starts Friday, officials told a news agency.

The reason for Mantega`s absence was not given.

But the finance minister last month accused leading
nations that will be represented at the meeting of waging an
"international currency war" by devaluing their monies to
boost exports at the expense of other nations.

"He won`t be going," was all a spokesman in Mantega`s
ministry said.

Mereilles`s office said the central bank president had
scheduling problems that prevented him from attending.

He had to participate in a meeting Wednesday that will
decide whether Brazil should modify its key interest rate, and
it takes 36 hours to travel from Brazil to South Korea.

Both men have been busy in recent days trying to stem
a worrying rise of Brazil`s currency, the real, against the US
dollar, which is eating away at Brazil`s export competitivity.

This week, Mantega announced a new hike in a tax on
foreign capital inflows for fixed-income investments such as
bonds, raising it to six per cent.

The central bank, meanwhile, has recently been buying
up dollars, swelling its reserves.

The G20 meeting of finance ministers and central bank
chiefs is to be held Friday and Saturday in the South Korean
city of Gyeongu.

It is to discuss tighter supervision of the global
financial sector as well as other issues facing the world
economy, and reform of the International Monetary Fund.

The meeting prepares a G20 summit of world leaders
that will take place November 11-12 in Seoul.

PTI