President Nicolas Sarkozy of France on Wednesday urged the US to maintain a strong dollar policy, warning on his first official trip to Washington since being elected six months ago that “monetary disorder risked turning into economic war”.
In a speech in French to a joint session of Congress – the first by a French leader for 11 years – Mr Sarkozy also attacked the “excesses” of Wall Street, saying the land of free enterprise gave too much room for financial speculation...
He took aim at the weakness of the dollar – which hit record lows against the euro this week – saying that the world’s leading exponent of free trade “should be the first to promote fair exchange rates”.
“The yuan is already a problem for everybody. The dollar should not remain simply a problem for others. If we are not careful, monetary disorder risks descending into economic war, of which we would all be victims.”
Pro-Americans should also be the first to criticise “the vagaries and excesses of a financial capitalism that currently leaves too much room for financial speculation”, Mr Sarkozy said. The US should become “strongly engaged in the introduction of necessary [financial market] rules and safeguards,” he added.