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Asian Nations Unite to Create Emergency Fund

A coalition of Asian nations consisting of China, Japan, South Korea, and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) have agreed to set up a US$160 billion emergency liquidity fund to help combat the global financial crisis.

“Poverty is worsening in many countries. Businesses are struggling. The extremely urgent climate change agenda could be affected,” said Indonesia’s President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono at the Asian Development Bank’s annual meeting in Bali. “If all this goes unchecked, down the road we could see social and political unrest in many countries.”

China, Japan, and South Korea will provide the bulk of the finances with contributions of US$38.4 billion each from China and Japan, and US$19.2 billion from South Korea.

ASEAN members will be responsible for the remaining 20 percent, or US$32 billion.

The fund will target social spending, health, education, credit-guarantees, and clean energy.

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