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Voice of America, 97-09-19

Voice of America: Selected Articles Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Voice of America <gopher://gopher.voa.gov>


CONTENTS

  • [01] EASTERN SLAVONIA (L ONLY) BY LISA SCHLEIN (GENEVA)
  • [02] EDITORIAL: RUSSIAN ECONOMY MAKES PROGRESS
  • [03] FRIDAY'S EDITORIALS BY NEAL LAVON (WASHINGTON)
  • [04] EDITORIAL: SHATTUCK ON BOSNIA IMPLEMENTATION
  • [05] EURO STOCKS (S-ONLY) BY PAUL FRANCUCH (LONDON)
  • [06] G-7 PREVIEW (L-ONLY) BY BARRY WOOD (HONG KONG)
  • [07] GERMANY / FRANCE (L ONLY) BY KYLE KING (BONN)
  • [08] N-Y ECON WRAP (S & L) BY BRECK ARDERY (NEW YORK)
  • [09] POLAND ELECTION (S ONLY) BY ART CHIMES (WARSAW)
  • [10] POLAND ELECTION ECON (L ONLY) BY ART CHIMES (WARSAW)
  • [11] WALES ASSEMBLY (L-ONLY) BY ANDRE DE NESNERA (LONDON)
  • [12] WALL STREET PREVIEW (S ONLY) BY BRECK ARDERY (NEW YORK)
  • [13] WORLD BANK PREVIEW (L-ONLY) BY BARRY WOOD (HONG KONG)

  • [01] EASTERN SLAVONIA (L ONLY) BY LISA SCHLEIN (GENEVA)

    DATE=9/19/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-220127
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: THE UNITED NATIONS SAYS IT FEARS ETHNIC CLASHES MIGHT BREAK OUT IN EASTERN SLAVONIA IF CROATIA DOES NOT MOVE QUICKLY TO GUARANTEE THE RIGHTS OF PEOPLE WHO ARE RETURNING TO HOMES THEY FLED DURING THE 1992 WAR BETWEEN SERBIA AND CROATIA. LISA SCHLEIN IN GENEVA SAYS EASTERN SLAVONIA REVERTS TO CROATIA IN MID-JANUARY, WHEN THE MANDATE ENDS FOR THE U-N TRANSITIONAL ADMINISTRATION FOR EASTERN SLAVONIA (UNTAES).

    TEXT: THE U-N PEACEKEEPERS AND THE HIGH COMMISSIONER FOR REFUGEES ARE WORKING TO RETURN TENS OF THOUSANDS OF CROATS AND SERBS WHO WERE DISPLACED DURING THE WAR. THE U-N WOULD LIKE TO HAVE MOST OF THE RETURNS COMPLETED BY THE TIME THE U-N OPERATION IN EASTERN SLAVONIA ENDS IN MID-JANUARY AND THE TERRITORY REVERTS TO CROATIA. OTHERWISE, THE HEAD OF THE U-N PEACEKEEPING FORCE IN EASTERN SLAVONIA, WILLIAM WALKER, SAYS HE IS AFRAID PROBLEMS THAT NOW EXIST BETWEEN SERBS AND CROATS WILL ONLY GET WORSE.

    /// WILLIAMS ACT ///

    IT'S FAIRLY EVIDENT THAT IN THE IMMEDIATE AFTERMATH OF THE EVENTS OF THE LAST FIVE, SIX, SEVEN YEARS, THERE ARE A LOT OF HATREDS, THERE'S A LOT OF BITTERNESS, THERE'S A LOT OF, PERHAPS, EVEN DESIRES FOR REVENGE.

    /// END ACT ///

    CROATIA SIGNED A NUMBER OF AGREEMENTS WITH THE UNITED NATIONS, PROMISING TO FACILITATE THE RETURN OF CROATS AND SERBS. THESE INCLUDE STEPS TO REMOVE ADMINISTRATIVE AND LEGAL OBSTACLES, ENSURING THE PROPERTY RIGHTS OF RETURNING REFUGEES AND DISPLACED PEOPLE, AND TAKING MEASURES TO PREVENT HARASSMENT OF RETURNEES.

    BUT THE UNITED NATIONS SAYS THE CROATIAN GOVERNMENT HAS NOT FULFILLED ANY OF ITS COMMITMENTS. THE U.N. HIGH COMMISSIONER FOR REFUGEES, SADAKO OGATA, SAYS THE SUCCESS OF THE DAYTON PEACE AGREEMENT IN BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA IS RELATED TO WHAT HAPPENS IN EASTERN SLAVONIA.

    /// OGATA ACT ///

    BECAUSE THERE ARE MANY DISPLACEMENTS THAT IS AFFECTED BY THE SITUATION IN EASTERN SLAVONIA. IN THE LARGER PICTURE, THE RETURN OF MINORITIES IS THE CRUCIAL PROBLEM THAT DAYTON HAS TO ADDRESS AND THIS IS NOT JUST IN BOSNIA. THERE ARE A LOT OF DISPLACEMENT RELATED TO THAT.

    /// END ACT ///

    MS. OGATA SAYS CONDITIONS HAVE TO BE CREATED FOR PEOPLE TO LEARN TO LIVE TOGETHER. SHE SAYS IT IS IMPORTANT THAT THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY SUPPORT MUCH-NEEDED REHABILITATION AND RECONSTRUCTION PROJECTS IN EASTERN SLAVONIA. (SIGNED)
    NEB/LS/JWH/KL
    19-Sep-97 12:13 PM EDT (1613 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [02] EDITORIAL: RUSSIAN ECONOMY MAKES PROGRESS

    DATE= SEPTEMBER 21, 1997
    TYPE= EDITORIAL
    NUMBER= 0-07448
    CONTENT=THIS IS THE ONLY EDITORIAL BEING RELEASED FOR BROADCAST
    SEPTEMBER 21, 1997.

    ANNCR: THE VOICE OF AMERICA PRESENTS DIFFERING POINTS OF VIEW ON A WIDE VARIETY OF ISSUES. NEXT, AN EDITORIAL EXPRESSING THE POLICIES OF THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT.

    VOICE:

    ACCORDING TO A LEADING AMERICAN ECONOMIST, MARTIN FELDSTEIN, THE RUSSIAN ECONOMY HAS MADE REMARKABLE PROGRESS. HE SAYS THAT OFFICIAL STATISTICS UNDERESTIMATE THE RATE OF GROWTH IN RUSSIA BECAUSE AS MUCH AS FORTY PERCENT OF ECONOMIC ACTIVITY MAY BE UNREPORTED.

    SINCE THE COLLAPSE OF COMMUNISM IN 1992 -- AND THE END OF PRICE CONTROLS -- THE RUSSIAN STANDARD OF LIVING HAS IMPROVED IN MANY WAYS. THE DEMISE OF THE COMMAND ECONOMY HAS ENDED WIDESPREAD SHORTAGES OF CONSUMER GOODS, AND ANNUAL INFLATION RATES HAVE BEEN REDUCED DRAMATICALLY. FROM 1992 TO 1994, INFLATION SOARED TO MORE THAN EIGHT-HUNDRED PERCENT. REFORMS BROUGHT INFLATION DOWN TO ABOUT TWENTY-TWO PERCENT IN 1996. THE INFLATION RATE IS EXPECTED TO BE FIFTEEN PERCENT THIS YEAR.

    PRIVATIZATION OF BUSINESSES AND HOUSING HAS BEEN A KEY FACTOR IN RUSSIA'S ECONOMIC TRANSITION. OWNERSHIP OF INDUSTRY HAS BEEN TRANSFERRED FROM THE STATE TO SHAREHOLDERS, WHO ARE FREE TO SELL THEIR SHARES TO PRIVATE INVESTORS. PRIVATIZATION HAS NOT YET PRODUCED A SUBSTANTIAL INCREASE IN INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTIVITY, IN PART BECAUSE THE TRANSFORMATION IS SO RECENT. BUT THERE ARE OTHER FACTORS AS WELL: A SHORTAGE OF SKILLED MANAGERS, INADEQUATE LAWS, HEAVY REGULATION, AND WIDESPREAD CORRUPTION.

    THE GOVERNMENT IS STARTING TO TAKE STEPS TO REMEDY SOME OF THESE PROBLEMS. BANKS ARE BEGINNING TO PROVIDE COMMERCIAL CREDIT. THE LEGAL SYSTEM IS BEING REFORMED TO ESTABLISH PROPERTY RIGHTS AND TO MAKE BANKRUPTCY AND MORTGAGE FORECLOSURE POSSIBLE. THE GOVERNMENT HAS PROPOSED AN OVERHAUL OF THE 1992 TAX CODE TO ENCOURAGE INVESTMENT AND PERSONAL SAVING, AND EFFECT A REDUCTION IN THE MARGINAL TAX RATE. IN RESPONSE, THE RUSSIAN STOCK MARKET HAS JUMPED ONE-HUNDRED FIFTY PERCENT THIS YEAR.

    IN SIX YEARS, RUSSIA HAS TAKEN STEPS TO PRIVATIZE, FREE PRICES, OPEN THE ECONOMY TO INTERNATIONAL TRADE, AND BEGIN THE CREATION OF THE LEGAL AND INSTITUTIONAL CULTURE NECESSARY TO A MARKET ECONOMY. WHILE A GREAT DEAL REMAINS TO BE DONE, THE U.S. BELIEVES THAT RUSSIA IS ON THE RIGHT PATH. BY PERSEVERING WITH FREE MARKET-REFORMS, RUSSIA'S PEOPLE CAN BEGIN TO ENJOY THE FRUITS OF PROSPERITY.

    ANNCR:

    THAT WAS AN EDITORIAL EXPRESSING THE POLICIES OF THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT. IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO BE HEARD ON THIS ISSUE, PLEASE WRITE TO EDITORIALS, VOICE OF AMERICA, WASHINGTON, D-C, 20547, U-S-A. YOU MAY ALSO SEND US A FAX AT (202) 619-1043. YOUR COMMENTS MAY BE USED ON THE AIR.
    19-Sep-97 12:11 PM EDT (1611 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [03] FRIDAY'S EDITORIALS BY NEAL LAVON (WASHINGTON)

    DATE=09/19/97
    TYPE=U-S EDITORIAL DIGEST
    NUMBER=6-10355
    TELEPHONE=619-0112
    CONTENT=
    // EDITORS, PLEASE NOTE: THIS IS PERISHABLE MATERIAL AND BECOMES DATED AFTER 10 P-M E-D-T ON FRIDAY SEPTEMBER 19TH //

    INTRO: CAMPAIGN FINANCE REFORM, THE CHINESE COMMUNIST PARTY CONGRESS IN BEIJING, AND ACADEMIC STANDARDS FOR COLLEGE ATHLETES PROVIDE THE TOPICS FOR FRIDAY'S EDITORIALS IN THE U-S PRESS.

    HERE WITH TODAY'S U-S EDITORIAL DIGEST IS_______________.

    VOICE: ON THURSDAY, INTERNATIONAL BUSINESSMAN ROGER TAMRAZ APPEARED BEFORE THE SENATE GOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS COMMITTEE INVESTIGATING ALLEGED CAMPAIGN FINANCE ABUSES.

    MR. TAMRAZ ADMITTED PAYING 300-THOUSAND DOLLARS TO THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY IN 1996 FOR THE CHANCE TO MEET PRESIDENT CLINTON AND PRESS FOR AN OIL PIPELINE PROJECT LINKING THE MEDITERRANEAN SEA TO THE CASPIAN SEA. DESPITE OBJECTIONS FROM THE STAFF OF THE NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL, MR. TAMRAZ, WITH THE ASSISTANCE OF THE CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE AGENCY, MET WITH THE PRESIDENT. HIS PLAN NEVER MATERIALIZED.

    OFFICIALS INVOLVED IN THE AFFAIR HAVE GIVEN CONFLICTING ACCOUNTS OF THE EPISODE TO CONGRESSIONAL INVESTIGATORS. THE NEW YORK TIMES COMMENTS:

    TEXT: "...THE CURRENT RECORD IS FULL OF CONTRADICTORY STATEMENTS AND MEMORY LOSS. A FORMER ENERGY DEPARTMENT OFFICIAL, JACK CARTER, ACKNOWLEDGED YESTERDAY THAT HE HAD PROBABLY TOLD SHEILA HESLIN OF THE NATIONAL SECURITY STAFF THAT MR. TAMRAZ WOULD DONATE MONEY TO THE DEMOCRATS IF ALLOWED IN THE WHITE HOUSE. MR. CARTER SAID HE GOT THE INFORMATION ... FROM A COLLEAGUE, CHARLES KYLE SIMPSON. MR. SIMPSON SAID HE KNEW NOTHING.... MS. HESLIN TESTIFIED THAT THE NAME OF THOMAS 'MACK' MCCLARTY, THE FORMER WHITE HOUSE CHIEF OF STAFF, WAS INVOKED AS PART OF THE CAMPAIGN OF PRESSURE.... MR. MCCLARTY DENIED HE HAD DONE ANY SUCH THING.... TOO MANY PEOPLE ARE RUNNING FOR COVER, AND TOO FEW ARE TELLING THE TRUTH."

    VOICE: THE WASHINGTON POST ALSO DISCUSSED THE MEMORY LAPSES OF THOSE NAMED IN MS. HESLIN'S ACCOUNT OF THE ATTEMPT TO FORCE A MEETING BETWEEN THE PRESIDENT AND MR. TAMRAZ. THE POST WRITES:

    TEXT: "...THE VARIOUS INTERMEDIARIES THROUGH WHOM THE PRESSURE WAS THEN TRANSMITTED TO GET HIM A MEETING CAN SCARCELY REMEMBER A THING THEY DID IN HIS BEHALF; THEY CAN ONLY REMEMBER THINGS THEY DIDN'T DO. THE UNBLUSHING DENIALS IT CONTINUES TO ELICIT ARE WHAT MAKE THIS STORY SO STRIKING, EVEN MORE IN THEIR WAY THAN THE DETAILS THAT ARE BEING DENIED."

    VOICE: CHINA'S COMMUNIST PARTY CONGRESS IN BEIJING THIS WEEK FOCUSED ON THE DOWNSIZING OF THE COUNTRY'S STATE-OWNED INDUSTRIES. THE NEW YORK TIMES BELIEVES THE ECONOMIC LIBERALIZATION PROGRAM CHAMPIONED BY PRESIDENT JIANG ZEMIN OFFERS A CHANCE FOR POLITICAL REFORM. THE TIMES SAYS:

    TEXT: "THAT MR. JIANG NOW SEEMS TO FEEL CONFIDENT ENOUGH TO EMBRACE ACCELERATED ECONOMIC REFORM LEAVES ROOM FOR HOPE THAT HE WILL GO FURTHER AND REOPEN THE ISSUE OF POLITICAL REFORM, OFF-LIMITS SINCE THE 1989 BLOOD BATH IN TIENANMEN SQUARE. IN A MODESTLY ENCOURAGING SIGN, CHINA'S OFFICIALLY CONTROLLED PRESS PERMITTED A SLIGHTLY BROADENED RANGE OF POLITICAL DEBATE IN THE WEEKS LEADING UP TO THIS WEEK'S PARTY CONGRESS..."

    VOICE: BUT THE WASHINGTON TIMES WRITES THAT, IN ITS OPINION, THE PARTY CONGRESS HAS SHOWN NO SIGNS OF POLITICAL LIBERALIZATION DESPITE THE COUNTRY'S PLAN TO STRENGTHEN ITS PRIVATE SECTOR. IN ITS WORDS:

    TEXT: "...THERE HAS BEEN NOTHING TO SUGGEST A CORRESPONDING POLITICAL OPENING. THE WESTERN POLITICAL MODEL WAS DULY DENOUNCED AT THE CONGRESS. FURTHER, A LETTER ... ASKING FOR A COMMUNIST PARTY REVIEW OF THE [TIENANMEN SQUARE] MASSACRE, APPARENTLY CIRCULATED AMONG THE DELEGATES ... WAS DISMISSED BY THE LEADERSHIP."

    VOICE: THE GOVERNING BOARD OF U-S INTERCOLLEGIATE ATHLETICS, THE N-C-A-A [NATIONAL COLLEGIATE ATHLETIC ASSOCIATION] DECIDED TO ENACT A YEAR-LONG REVIEW OF THE ORGANIZATION'S ACADEMIC REQUIREMENTS FOR MINORITY ATHLETES. EARLY DATA SHOWS THAT THE NEW ACADEMIC STANDARDS, WHICH INCLUDE A MINIMUM SCORE ON A NATIONWIDE COLLEGE ENTRANCE EXAM, MOST HURT AFRICAN-AMERICANS.

    U-S-A TODAY BELIEVES THE STANDARDS SHOULD BE ADJUSTED, BUT NOT ELIMINATED, AS SOME COLLEGE COACHES AND CRITICS DEMAND. U-S-A TODAY CONTINUES:

    TEXT: "ELEVEN YEARS AFTER THE N-C-A-A BEGAN DEMANDING BETTER ACADEMIC CREDENTIALS OF COLLEGE ATHLETES, IT'S FINALLY SENDING A CLEAR MESSAGE: STUDENT-ATHLETES MUST BE ABLE TO SUCCEED AS STUDENTS.... SINCE THE N-C-A-A BEGAN TIGHTENING ACADEMIC STANDARDS IN 1986, COLLEGE GRADUATION RATES FOR ATHLETES ARE UP. AND BLACK ATHLETES, IN PARTICULAR, NOW EARN DEGREES AT MUCH HIGHER RATES THAN THEIR NONPLAYER PEERS.... USING THE STRICTER STANDARDS, THE NUMBER OF INELIGIBLE COLLEGE-BOUND ATHLETES JUMPED FROM 11 PERCENT TO 27 PERCENT.... BUT ... THERE WERE FAR FEWER INELIGIBLES THAN PREDICTED.... CONCERNED OFFICIALS ARE RIGHT TO QUESTION WHETHER SOME ADJUSTMENTS ARE NEEDED AS THE N-C-A-A CONTINUES TO RAISE THE BAR FOR ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE."

    VOICE: HOWEVER, CHARLES ROONEY, AN ADVOCATE WHO OPPOSES STANDARDIZED TESTING, POINTS OUT IN AN ACCOMPANYING EDITORIAL THAT THE N-C-A-A'S POLICY OF BASING ELIGIBILITY MOSTLY ON A NATION-WIDE COLLEGE ENTRANCE EXAM IS UNFAIR. HE WRITES:

    TEXT: "THE N-C-A-A'S OWN RESEARCHERS HAVE NOTED SERIOUS FLAWS IN THE TEST-SCORE POLICY. ONE N-C-A-A STUDY OF THE [1983] ... FRESHMAN CLASS SHOWED THAT THE RULE WOULD HAVE DENIED FULL ELIGIBILITY TO NEARLY 50 PERCENT OF THE AFRICAN-AMERICAN STUDENT-ATHLETES WHO WENT ON TO GRADUATE.... IF N-C-A-A LEADERS TRULY WANT TO ENFORCE HIGHER ACADEMIC STANDARDS ... THEY SHOULDN'T USE ARBITRARY TEST-SCORE REQUIREMENTS TO SHUT THE DOOR ON ACADEMICALLY QUALIFIED STUDENT-ATHLETES WHO HAVEN'T HAD THE CHANCE TO PROVE THEMSELVES IN THE CLASSROOM AND ON THE FIELD."

    VOICE: AND WITH THAT, WE BRING TO A CLOSE THIS EDITION OF THE U-S EDITORIAL DIGEST. (SIGNED)
    NL /MMK
    19-Sep-97 11:28 AM EDT (1528 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [04] EDITORIAL: SHATTUCK ON BOSNIA IMPLEMENTATION

    DATE= SEPTEMBER 20, 1997
    TYPE= EDITORIAL
    NUMBER= 0-07447
    CONTENT=THIS IS THE ONLY EDITORIAL BEING RELEASED FOR BROADCAST
    SEPTEMBER 20, 1997.

    ANNCR: THE VOICE OF AMERICA PRESENTS DIFFERING POINTS OF VIEW ON A WIDE VARIETY OF ISSUES. NEXT, AN EDITORIAL EXPRESSING THE POLICIES OF THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT.

    VOICE:

    THE RETURN OF REFUGEES IS ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT REQUIREMENTS OF THE DAYTON PEACE ACCORDS IN BOSNIA. IT IS ALSO ONE OF THE BIGGEST CHALLENGES. ABOUT ONE-HUNDRED SIXTY THOUSAND REFUGEES HAVE NOW RETURNED TO THEIR HOMES. DURING THE RECENT MUNICIPAL ELECTIONS IN BOSNIA, MANY CITIZENS RETURNED TO THE VILLAGES WHERE THEY LIVED IN 1991 TO VOTE. IN SPITE OF SUCH SIGNS OF PROGRESS, MANY HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF BOSNIAN REFUGEES ARE STILL WAITING TO RETURN HOME.

    AS JOHN SHATTUCK, ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF STATE FOR DEMOCRACY, HUMAN RIGHTS AND LABOR, SAID, THE U.S. AND ITS ALLIES ARE MAKING RECONSTRUCTION ASSISTANCE AVAILABLE TO MUNICIPALITIES IN BOSNIA THAT COOPERATE IN THE RETURN OF REFUGEES, THE ARREST OF WAR CRIMINALS AND OTHER REQUIREMENTS OF THE PEACE PLAN. AREAS SUCH AS BRCKO ARE NOW RECEIVING AID AND THE REBUILDING OF HOMES THERE HAS BEGUN. NATO FORCES ARE PROTECTING REFUGEES RETURNING TO BRCKO. BOSNIAN MUNICIPALITIES THAT FAIL TO FULFILL THE DAYTON ACCORDS WILL RECEIVE NO RECONSTRUCTION ASSISTANCE.

    ANOTHER CRITICAL REQUIREMENT OF THE PEACE PLAN IS FREEDOM OF MOVEMENT. THERE HAVE BEEN SEVERE VIOLATIONS OF FREEDOM OF MOVEMENT IN PALE AND BANJA LUKA. INDEED, THERE HAS BEEN SYSTEMATIC RESISTANCE TO IMPLEMENTATION OF THE DAYTON ACCORDS IN PALE. AND AS MR. SHATTUCK POINTED OUT, INDICTED WAR CRIMINALS ARE PRETENDING TO HELP LEAD THE COUNTRY, WHEN IN FACT THEY ARE ONLY CAUSING SUFFERING TO THE PEOPLE.

    FULL IMPLEMENTATION OF THE DAYTON ACCORDS IS THE BEST WAY TO ENSURE THAT BOSNIA AGAIN BECOMES A UNIFIED, MULTI-ETHNIC STATE. AS ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF STATE SHATTUCK SAID, IT IS NOT IN ANYONE'S INTEREST TO RETURN TO VIOLENCE. THE PEOPLE OF BOSNIA MAY BE BEGINNING TO REALIZE THAT BUILDING A LASTING PEACE IS IN THEIR INTEREST.

    ANNCR:

    THAT WAS AN EDITORIAL EXPRESSING THE POLICIES OF THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT. IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO BE HEARD ON THIS ISSUE, PLEASE WRITE TO EDITORIALS, VOICE OF AMERICA, WASHINGTON, D-C, 20547, U-S-A. YOU MAY ALSO SEND US A FAX AT (202) 619-1043. YOUR COMMENTS MAY BE USED ON THE AIR.
    19-Sep-97 12:11 PM EDT (1611 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [05] EURO STOCKS (S-ONLY) BY PAUL FRANCUCH (LONDON)

    DATE=9/19/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-220136
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: STOCK MARKETS IN WESTERN EUROPE ENDED THE TRADING WEEK FRIDAY WITH NO CLEAR SIGN OF DIRECTION. FROM LONDON, V-O-A'S PAUL FRANCUCH HAS THE CLOSING FIGURES.

    TEXT: PRICES WERE MOSTLY ON THE DECLINE, ANALYSTS SAY, DUE TO THE EXPIRATION OF TRADING OPTIONS ON FUTURES AND INDEXES. THIS SO-CALLED "DOUBLE" OR "TRIPLE-WITCHING" EFFECT, AS TRADERS CALL IT, WAS MOST NOTABLE ON WALL STREET, BUT IT ALSO HELPED REVERSE THE MOSTLY UPWARD TREND SEEN MOST OF THIS WEEK ON THE EUROPEAN BOURSES.

    THE EARLY-DAY TRADING ON THE FRANKFURT "DAX 30" INDEX ENDED BEFORE THE SELLING TREND BEGAN. THE DAX ENDED UP 32-AND-A-HALF POINTS. NOT SO HERE IN LONDON, WHERE THE "FINANCIAL TIMES" 100 INDEX WAS OFF ALMOST 22-AND-A-HALF POINTS, OR IN PARIS, WHERE THE "CAC 40" INDEX WAS OFF JUST OVER ONE POINT.

    THE U-S DOLLAR WAS MAINLY STEADY, LOSING A HALF PFENNIG AGAINST THE GERMAN MARK BUT UP A FRACTION OF A CENT AGAINST THE BRITISH POUND.

    GOLD CLOSED THE WEEK IN LONDON WITH A GAIN OF ONE-DOLLAR-FIVE CENTS AN OUNCE, PRICED IN THE CLOSING FIX AT 321-DOLLARS-80 CENTS. (SIGNED)
    NEB/PCF/MMK
    19-Sep-97 2:33 PM EDT (1833 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [06] G-7 PREVIEW (L-ONLY) BY BARRY WOOD (HONG KONG)

    DATE=9/19/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-220111
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: FINANCE MINISTERS AND CENTRAL BANKERS FROM THE WORLD'S SEVEN RICHEST INDUSTRIAL COUNTRIES MEET SATURDAY IN HONG KONG TO DISCUSS, AMONG OTHER ISSUES, SOUTH EAST ASIA'S FINANCIAL TURMOIL. V-O-A'S BARRY WOOD REPORTS FROM HONG KONG.

    TEXT: ON THE EVE OF THE FINANCE MINISTERS' MEETING SOUTH EAST ASIAN CURRENCIES AGAIN DECLINED AGAINST THE DOLLAR. FINANCE OFFICIALS ALREADY IN HONG KONG SAY THERE IS FEAR FOR THE SYSTEM AND WORRY THAT THE REGION'S FINANCIAL TROUBLES HAVE NOT YET COME TO AN END. JAMES WOLFENSOHN, THE WORLD BANK PRESIDENT , BELIEVES THE FINANCIAL RESCUE FOR THAILAND, PUT TOGETHER LAST MONTH, WILL ULTIMATELY EASE MARKET PRESSURE.

    //WOLFENSOHN ACT//

    THE MONEY IS THERE TO SEE THAILAND THROUGH. BUT IT (THE FINANCIAL CRISIS) WILL HAVE AN IMPACT ON THAI GROWTH. THERE IS NO DOUBT THAT THE GROWTH PATH WILL COME DOWN. THERE IS NO DOUBT THAT INVESTMENT IN INDONESIA AND MALAYSIA WILL BE REDUCED, AS PEOPLE TRY TO MAKE SURE THAT THE STORM BARRIERS ARE UP. PERFECTLY RATIONAL. SO IN THAT SENSE (THE CRISIS) IS A HICCUP. I DON'T THINK IT IS GOING TO STOP THE FUTURE DEVELOPMENT OF ASIA. I'M VERY CONFIDENT OF THAT.

    //END ACT//

    INDUSTRIAL NATIONS AND INTERNATIONAL LENDERS HAVE ASSEMBLED NEARLY 20 BILLION DOLLARS AS AN EMERGENCY FUND TO HELP THE THAI AUTHORITIES FEND OFF ANY FUTURE SPECULATIVE ATTACK AGAINST THE CURRENCY.

    U-S TREASURY SECRETARY ROBERT RUBIN SAYS THE HONG KONG MEETING WILL ALSO DISCUSS JAPAN'S RISING TRADE SURPLUS AND ITS DISRUPTIVE IMPACT ON THE GLOBAL ECONOMY. THE GROUP OF SEVEN IS COMPRISED OF THE UNITED STATES, CANADA, THE FOUR LARGEST WEST EUROPEAN NATIONS, AND JAPAN. (SIGNED)
    NEB/BDW/FC/EH
    19-Sep-97 7:43 AM EDT (1143 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [07] GERMANY / FRANCE (L ONLY) BY KYLE KING (BONN)

    DATE=9/19/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-220122
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: THE LEADERS OF GERMANY AND FRANCE SAY THEY ARE CONVINCED THE PLANNED SINGLE EUROPEAN CURRENCY WILL BE LAUNCHED, ON TIME, IN 1999. VOA'S KYLE KING HAS THIS REPORT FROM BONN.

    TEXT: SPEAKING TO REPORTERS AT THE END OF A TWO DAY SUMMIT IN THE EASTERN GERMAN CITY OF WEIMAR, FRENCH PRESIDENT JACQUES CHIRAC SAID THE PLANNED SINGLE EUROPEAN CURRENCY WOULD BE AN INSTRUMENT OF PROGRESS. THE NEW CURRENCY, HE SAID, IS NOW WITHIN OUR GRASP.

    DESPITE SOME EARLIER FRICTION OVER THE CURRENCY ISSUE, FRENCH PRIME MINISTER LIONEL JOSPIN, WHO ALSO TOOK PART IN THE SUMMIT, SAID HE HAD NO DOUBT THAT FRANCE WOULD MEET THE CRITERIA FOR MONETARY UNION.

    GERMAN CHANCELLOR HELMUT KOHL TOLD REPORTERS HE WAS SURE THE NEW CURRENCY WOULD BE INTRODUCED ON TIME, IN JANUARY OF 1999.

    MR. KOHL SAID HE ALSO EXPECTED FRANCE AND GERMANY, THE TWO MOST POWERFUL ECONOMIES IN EUROPE, TO STRENGTHEN INDUSTRIAL COOPERATION.

    MR. KOHL SAID THE TWO COUNTRIES WOULD WORK TOGETHER TO COME UP WITH PLANS TO INCREASE THE COMPETITIVENESS OF THE EUROPEAN AEROSPACE SECTOR, WHICH FACES STRONG COMPETITION FROM THE UNITED STATES.

    //REST OPT//

    MR. KOHL SAID GERMANY AND FRANCE HAD A HISTORIC RESPONSIBILITY TO HELP CREATE A UNITED EUROPE AND AVOID THE HORRORS OF THE PAST.

    EARLIER IN THE DAY, THE FRENCH PRESIDENT MADE A BRIEF VISIT TO THE FORMER NAZI CONCENTRATION CAMP AT BUCHENWALD, WHICH IS NOT FAR FROM WHERE THE SUMMIT TOOK PLACE. (SIGNED)
    NEB/KBK/PCF/KL
    19-Sep-97 11:46 AM EDT (1546 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [08] N-Y ECON WRAP (S & L) BY BRECK ARDERY (NEW YORK)

    DATE=9/19/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-220144
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: STOCK PRICES IN THE UNITED STATES WERE MIXED TODAY (FRIDAY) ON ANOTHER FRIDAY TRADERS CALL "TRIPLE WITCHING." V-O-A'S CORRESPONDENT BRECK ARDERY REPORTS FROM NEW YORK.

    TEXT: THE DOW JONES INDUSTRIAL AVERAGE CLOSED AT 79 HUNDRED 17, DOWN FIVE POINTS. FOR THE WEEK, THE INDUSTRIAL AVERAGE GAINED 175 POINTS OR MORE THAN TWO PERCENT. THE LARGER STANDARD AND POOR'S INDEX OF 500 STOCKS CLOSED FRIDAY AT 950, UP THREE POINTS.

    THERE WAS NO ECONOMIC NEWS TO MOVE STOCK PRICES AND ANALYSTS SAY TRADING WAS HEAVILY INFLUENCED BY THE SO-CALLED "TRIPLE WITCHING" EFFECT. THAT MEANS THE SIMULTANEOUS EXPIRATION OF STOCK OPTIONS, INDEX OPTIONS AND STOCK FUTURES CONTRACTS. SUCH DAYS OFTEN FEATURE VOLATILE PRICE SWINGS OF NO LASTING CONSEQUENCE. THE INDUSTRIAL AVERAGE WAS DOWN MORE THAN 50 POINTS AN HOUR BEFORE THE CLOSE OF TRADING BUT RECOVERED MUCH OF ITS LOSS.

    THE WESTINGHOUSE ELECTRIC COMPANY IS EXPANDING ITS PRESENCE IN THE U-S RADIO BROADCASTING BUSINESS. WESTINGHOUSE WILL PAY ONE POINT SIX BILLION DOLLARS IN CASH FOR 98 STATIONS OWNED BY THE AMERICAN RADIO SYSTEMS CORPORATION. THAT WILL GIVE WESTINGHOUSE A TOTAL OF 175 RADIO STATIONS.

    /// REST OPT FOR LONG ///

    THE GILLETTE PERSONAL CARE PRODUCTS COMPANY SAYS IT WILL BUY BACK UP TO 25 MILLION SHARES OF ITS STOCK. THE ANNOUNCEMENT CAUSED A THREE PERCENT RISE IN GILLETTE STOCK.

    THE FOOD LION SUPERMARKET CHAIN SAYS IT WILL CLOSE 61 GROCERY STORES IN THE SOUTHWESTERN REGION OF THE UNITED STATES AND ELIMINATE 31 HUNDRED JOBS. THE COMPANY SAYS IT WANTS TO CONCENTRATE ON MARKETS IN THE SOUTHEASTERN UNITED STATES.

    U-N SECRETARY GENERAL KOFI ANNAN IS VERY PLEASED BY THE ONE BILLION DOLLAR DONATION TO U-N ORGANIZATIONS BY TED TURNER, THE AMERICAN TELEVISION EXECUTIVE. MR. ANNAN SAYS HE HOPES MR. TURNER'S DONATION WILL INSPIRE SOME GOVERNMENTS TO PAY THEIR OVERDUE OBLIGATIONS TO THE UNITED NATIONS.(SIGNED) NEB/NY/BA/LSF/PT
    19-Sep-97 5:46 PM EDT (2146 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [09] POLAND ELECTION (S ONLY) BY ART CHIMES (WARSAW)

    DATE=9/19/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-220134
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    ///WILL HOLD AS OVERNIGHTER///

    INTRO: SUNDAY IS ELECTION DAY IN POLAND. AND THE LATEST OPINION SURVEY INDICATES THE PARLIAMENTARY VOTE IS TOO CLOSE TO CALL. V-O-A CORRESPONDENT ART CHIMES REPORTS FROM WARSAW.

    TEXT: THE RULING "DEMOCRATIC LEFT ALLIANCE" NARROWLY EDGED OUT ITS "SOLIDARITY" RIVALS IN THE SURVEY CONDUCTED EARLIER THIS WEEK. BUT THESE RESULTS SHOULD BE VIEWED WITH CAUTION. IN OPINION POLLS GOING BACK TO EARLY AUGUST, THE TWO MAIN CONTENDERS HAVE BEEN TRADING FRONT-RUNNER STATUS WITH NO CLEAR PATTERN. THE SURVEY HAS A THREE PERCENT MARGIN OF ERROR, MAKING THE RESULT EVEN MORE UNPREDICTABLE. TOGETHER, SOLIDARITY AND THE DEMOCRATIC LEFT ALLIANCE SHARE ABOUT HALF THE VOTES. AMONG THE OTHER PARTIES THAT COULD BE IN THE NEW POLISH GOVERNMENT, THE "FREEDOM UNION" WAS THE CHOICE OF 16-PERCENT OF THOSE SURVEYED, AND THE JUNIOR COALITION PARTNER, THE "PEASANT PARTY," POLLED JUST 12 PERCENT. ALMOST 11-HUNDRED ELIGIBLE VOTERS WERE QUESTIONED FOR THIS SURVEY, WHICH WAS COMMISSIONED BY POLISH TELEVISION. (SIGNED)
    NEB/ART/PCF
    19-Sep-97 1:41 PM EDT (1741 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [10] POLAND ELECTION ECON (L ONLY) BY ART CHIMES (WARSAW)

    DATE=9/19/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-220129
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: POLISH VOTERS ELECT A NEW PARLIAMENT SUNDAY. THE COUNTRY HAS ONE OF THE STRONGEST ECONOMIES AMONG EUROPE'S FORMERLY-COMMUNIST STATES AND EXPERTS SAY THERE WILL BE LITTLE CHANGE IN POLICY, EVEN IF THE ELECTION BRINGS A CHANGE IN GOVERNMENT. V-O-A CORRESPONDENT ART CHIMES REPORTS FROM WARSAW ON HOW THE POLISH BUSINESS COMMUNITY VIEWS THE COMING VOTE.

    TEXT: POLAND'S SOLIDARITY TRADE UNION LED THE SUCCESSFUL EFFORT TO DE-THRONE THE COMMUNISTS IN 1989. NOW, EIGHT YEARS LATER, SOLIDARITY IS TRYING TO UNSEAT A GOVERNMENT LED BY THE COMMUNISTS' SUCCESSORS, THE RULING DEMOCRATIC LEFT ALLIANCE. THE ALLIANCE, KNOWN BY ITS POLISH INITIALS, S-L-D, CAME TO POWER FOUR YEARS AGO, REPLACING THE SOLIDARITY-LED GOVERNMENT, WHOSE PAINFUL ECONOMIC REFORMS MADE IT UNPOPULAR WITH MANY POLISH VOTERS. TODAY, SOLIDARITY'S APPEAL IS BASED MORE ON TRADITIONAL VALUES OF RELIGION AND PATRIOTISM, RATHER THAN POCKETBOOK ISSUES. THAT'S BECAUSE THE COUNTRY HAS PROSPERED UNDER THE S-L-D. THE EX-COMMUNISTS MAY HAVE COME TO THE FREE MARKET RELUCTANTLY AND REFORMS MAY NOT BE FAST ENOUGH TO SUIT EVERYONE, BUT THE S-L-D IS PRESIDING OVER A PERIOD OF ECONOMIC EXPANSION.

    BOTH GROUPS PLEDGE A CONTINUATION OF EXISTING POLICIES. THAT'S WHY THE HEAD OF THE AMERICAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE IN POLAND, TONY HOUSH, SAYS WESTERN INVESTORS AREN'T TOO CONCERNED ABOUT WHICH PARTY LEADS THE NEXT GOVERNMENT.

    // HOUSH ACT //

    WHAT'S MOST IMPORTANT, I THINK, IS THE CONTINUATION OF THE CURRENT POLICIES OF FISCAL DISCIPLINE AND REFORMS. AND ALL THE PARTIES HAVE STATED THAT THEY WILL BASICALLY CONTINUE THE REFORMS. CHANGE IS A MATTER OF DEGREE.

    // END ACT //

    WHAT THE BUSINESS COMMUNITY CARES ABOUT IS STABILITY AND PREDICTABILITY. IT WANTS A GOVERNMENT THAT WILL NOT FALL AT THE NEXT CONFIDENCE VOTE.

    INTERNATIONAL INVESTORS CAST THEIR OWN VOTE OF CONFIDENCE EARLIER THIS WEEK. AFTER STAYING OUT OF THE MARKET RECENTLY, THEY WERE BUYING AGAIN AT THURSDAY'S AUCTION OF POLISH TREASURY BONDS. THE CHIEF WARSAW ECONOMIST OF "I-N-G BARINGS BANK," KRZYSZTOF RYBINSKI, SAYS IT'S A SIGNAL THE INVESTORS THINK THE NEW GOVERNMENT WILL STAY IN OFFICE FOR SOME TIME.

    // RYBINSKI ACT //

    THIS MAY SUGGEST THAT FOREIGNERS (ARE WILLING TO) TAKE AN "ELECTION BET" ... AND THEY SPECULATE ON STABLE GOVERNMENT. IT'S DIFFICULT TO SPECULATE WHO WILL FORM THE GOVERNMENT, BUT THEY SPECULATE IT WILL BE A STABLE GOVERNMENT PURSUING THE SAME MACROECONOMIC POLICY OF THE PREVIOUS GOVERNMENT.

    // END ACT //

    THE SIMILARITY IN POLICIES MAY EXPLAIN WHY THE TWO MAIN PARTIES ARE VIRTUALLY TIED IN THE FINAL PRE-ELECTION POLLING. LIFE IS GETTING BETTER IN POLAND. AND POLISH VOTERS APPARENTLY THINK IT IS LIKELY TO CONTINUE TO GET BETTER, NO MATTER WHO WINS. (SIGNED)
    NEB/ART/PCF/KL
    19-Sep-97 12:43 PM EDT (1643 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [11] WALES ASSEMBLY (L-ONLY) BY ANDRE DE NESNERA (LONDON)

    DATE=9/19/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-220116
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: VOTERS IN WALES HAVE DECIDED TO GIVE THEMSELVES A DEGREE OF AUTONOMY FROM LONDON. BUT AS V-O-A CORRESPONDENT ANDRE DE NESNERA REPORTS FROM THE BRITISH CAPITAL, THE PROPOSED WELSH ASSEMBLY WAS APPROVED ONLY BY AN EXTREMELY SLIM MARGIN.

    TEXT: WELSH VOTERS DECIDED BY THE NARROWEST OF MARGINS TO ESTABLISH AN ASSEMBLY, OR PARLIAMENT, GIVING THEM MORE OF A SAY IN RUNNING THEIR AFFAIRS.

    EARLY RESULTS SHOWED A LARGE MAJORITY AGAINST A WELSH ASSEMBLY -- BUT THEN THOSE IN FAVOR GAINED GROUND AS MORE RESULTS CAME IN. THE PENDULUM SWUNG THE OTHER WAY ONCE AGAIN WHEN VOTERS IN THE WELSH CAPITAL, CARDIFF, OVERWHELMINGLY VOTED AGAINST A SEPARATE ASSEMBLY. AT THAT TIME, THOSE FAVORING SUCH A BODY ALMOST CONCEDED DEFEAT -- UNTIL THE LAST OF THE 22 DISTRICTS GAVE THEM A MAJORITY OF JUST OVER SIX-THOUSAND VOTES.

    MORE THAN A MILLION VOTERS CAST BALLOTS -- BUT AN EQUAL NUMBER STAYED HOME, SHOWING A GREAT DEGREE OF APATHY AMONG THE WELSH CONCERNING AN ASSEMBLY WHICH WILL HAVE NO LAWMAKING POWERS AND WILL NOT BE ABLE TO LEVY TAXES.

    THE REFERENDUM ON A WELSH ASSEMBLY WAS SUPPORTED BY BRITISH PRIME MINISTER TONY BLAIR AS PART OF HIS PLAN TO MODERNIZE THE COUNTRY'S POLITICAL INSTITUTIONS. LAST WEEK, VOTERS IN SCOTLAND APPROVED BY A LARGE MARGIN A PARLIAMENT WITH TAX-RAISING POWERS.

    /// OPT ///

    MR. BLAIR ALSO FAVORS AN ELECTED MAYOR FOR LONDON AND A REFORM OF THE HOUSE OF LORDS. /// END OPT ///

    SPEAKING TO REPORTERS AFTER THE NARROW VICTORY IN WALES, MR. BLAIR COMMENTED ON THE WAFER-THIN MAJORITY.

    /// BLAIR ACT ///

    A SENSIBLE GOVERNMENT THAT IS RESPONSIVE TO WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING WILL SHOW THAT YES, WE TAKE ACCOUNT OF THE NARROWNESS OF THE MARGIN AND THAT IS WHY WE CARRY ON, PERSUADING PEOPLE, ALLAYING THEIR FEARS AND MAKING SURE THEY UNDERSTAND THIS IS ABOUT DEVELOPING A MODERN CONSTITUTION FOR THE COUNTRY.

    /// END ACT ///

    BRITAIN'S MAIN OPPOSITION PARTY -- THE CONSERVATIVES -- CAMPAIGNED AGAINST THE WELSH ASSEMBLY. ITS LEADERS ARGUED THIS IS ANOTHER STEP LEADING TO THE EVENTUAL BREAKUP OF THE UNITED KINGDOM.

    CONSERVATIVE PARTY LEADER WILLIAM HAGUE WARNED MR. BLAIR HE DOES NOT HAVE A MANDATE TO BRING ABOUT RADICAL CONSTITUTIONAL CHANGE IN WALES.

    /// OPT // HAGUE ACT ///

    I THINK THE RESULT OF THE REFERENDUM IN WALES IS A VERY STARK WARNING TO THE GOVERNMENT ABOUT THE DANGERS OF WHAT THEY ARE DOING TO THIS COUNTRY. IT SHOWS THE DANGER OF DIVIDING WALES RATHER THAN UNITING IT, AND WE HAVE SEEN THE COUNTRY SPLIT DOWN THE MIDDLE -- 11 COUNCILS VOTED ONE WAY AND 11 COUNCILS VOTED THE OTHER WAY. SO I HOPE THEY WILL STOP AND THINK ABOUT THE IMPLICATIONS OF WHAT THEY ARE DOING.

    /// END ACT // END OPT ///

    THE BRITISH GOVERNMENT WILL PRESENT LEGISLATION IN NOVEMBER TO THE HOUSE OF COMMONS ESTABLISHING A WELSH ASSEMBLY. ELECTIONS TO THE BODY WILL TAKE PLACE IN EARLY 1999 -- AND THE 60 MEMBERS WILL OFFICIALLY BEGIN WORK IN CARDIFF AT THE TURN OF THE CENTURY. (SIGNED)
    NEB/ADEN/JWH
    19-Sep-97 9:12 AM EDT (1312 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [12] WALL STREET PREVIEW (S ONLY) BY BRECK ARDERY (NEW YORK)

    DATE=9/19/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-220145
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:
    ///FOR USE UNTIL THE START OF TRADING AT 9:30 A-M ON MONDAY SEPTEMBER 22//

    INTRO: MANY ANALYSTS SAY STOCK PRICES IN THE UNITED STATES SEEM POISED FOR A MAJOR TURN, BUT THEY ARE DIVIDED ON WHICH DIRECTION PRICES WILL GO. V-O-A'S CORRESPONDENT BRECK ARDERY REPORTS FROM NEW YORK.

    TEXT: THE DOW JONES INDUSTRIAL AVERAGE WILL START THE WEEK AT 79 HUNDRED 17 AFTER GAINING 175 POINTS -- OR MORE THAN TWO PERCENT LAST WEEK.

    RECENT WEEKS HAVE FEATURED SOME EXTREME VOLATILITY IN U-S STOCK PRICES WITH WIDE SWINGS FROM DAY TO DAY AND EVEN WITHIN A SINGLE TRADING SESSION. ANALYSTS SAY THAT VOLATILITY INDICATES UNCERTAINTY AND NERVOUSNESS AMONG TRADERS WHO CAN NOT DECIDE WHAT THE INTERMEDIATE TREND REALLY IS.

    SOME ANALYSTS SAY THAT IF, AS EXPECTED, THE U-S CENTRAL BANK KEEPS INTEREST RATES STABLE, INFLATION REMAINS LOW AND CORPORATE PROFITS CONTINUE TO RISE, STOCKS WILL SOON RESUME THEIR UPWARD MOMENTUM.

    BUT OTHERS SAY THE DAYS OF RECORD HIGH STOCK INDEXES ARE OVER FOR NOW AND URGE CAUTION WITH THE APPROACH OF OCTOBER, HISTORICALLY NOT A GOOD MONTH FOR THE STOCK MARKET.(SIGNED) NEB/NY/BA/LSF/PT
    19-Sep-97 5:40 PM EDT (2140 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [13] WORLD BANK PREVIEW (L-ONLY) BY BARRY WOOD (HONG KONG)

    DATE=9/19/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-220106
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: WORLD BANK PRESIDENT JAMES WOLFENSOHN SAID FRIDAY THAT THE CURRENCY TURMOIL IN SOUTH EAST ASIA WILL WEIGH HEAVILY ON DELEGATES ATTENDING THE WORLD BANK AND INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND'S ANNUAL MEETING IN HONG KONG. V-O-A'S BARRY WOOD REPORTS MR. WOLFENSOHN ALSO IDENTIFIED BANKING REFORM, CORRUPTION AND POVERTY ALLEVIATION AS PRINCIPAL THEMES TO BE DISCUSSED AT THE MEETING.

    TEXT: MR. WOLFENSOHN TOLD REPORTERS (FRIDAY) THAT THE CRISIS IN THAILAND GIVES NEW URGENCY TO FINANCIAL SECTOR REFORM. HE EXPRESSED CONFIDENCE THE CRISIS IS BEING OVERCOME, BUT SAID THE SHARP FALL IN REGIONAL CURRENCIES AND STOCK PRICES HAS INJECTED FEAR INTO THE GLOBAL SYSTEM. MR. WOLFENSOHN, AN AUSTRALIAN BORN AMERICAN, SAID STRONGER BANK REGULATION IS ESSENTIAL . MR. WOLFENSOHN SAID HE IS DELIGHTED THE WORLD BANK HAS BEEN HANDED THE JOB OF HELPING ITS BORROWERS STRENGTHEN THEIR FINANCIAL SECTORS.

    //FIRST WOLFENSOHN ACT//

    I THINK OF THE WORK WE DO ON FINANCIAL REFORM AS CARDIAC SURGERY. IF YOU DON'T GET IT RIGHT THE PATIENT DIES. THE OTHER STUFF IS LIKE ORTHOPEDICS. YOU MIGHT LOSE AN ARM OR A LEG, BUT YOU CAN STAY ALIVE. BUT IF YOU CAN'T

    GET THE GOVERNANCE OF YOUR FINANCIAL SYSTEM RIGHT YOU CAN'T GET ANYTHING RIGHT. AND THE PEOPLE WHO ARE AFFECTED WORSE ARE THE POOR. THAT IS VERY CLEAR.

    //END ACT//

    MR. WOLFENSOHN HAS HEADED THE WORLD BANK FOR TWO YEARS. AN INVESTMENT BANKER, MR. WOLFENSOHN HAS GONE BEYOND HIS PREDECESSORS IN PUTTING SENSITIVE ISSUES LIKE CORRUPTION ON THE WORLD BANK'S AGENDA.

    //SECOND WOLFENSOHN ACT//

    THE SINGLE BIGGEST INHIBITOR TO ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AND TO THE INWARD FLOW OF FUNDS--OR DOMESTIC INVESTMENT FUNDS--IS CORRUPTION. AND THE SINGLE BIGGEST PROBLEM VOTERS HAVE IS CORRUPTION. PEOPLE DON'T LIKE BEING POOR. BUT IF THEY SEE SOMEONE ELSE GETTING VERY RICH THEY GET VERY UPSET.

    //END ACT//

    MR. WOLFENSOHN APPLAUDED RECENT MOVES IN WESTERN EUROPE TO REPEAL THE TAX DEDUCTIBILITY OF CORPORATE BRIBES. HE SUGGESTED THAT COMPANIES FROM INDUSTRIAL COUNTRIES ARE AS GUILTY OF CORRUPTION AS DEVELOPING COUNTRIES. IT TAKES TWO SIDES, HE SAID, FOR THERE TO BE CORRUPTION. THE WORLD BANK PRESIDENT SAID POVERTY ALLEVIATION--PARTICULARLY IN RURAL AREAS -- ALSO REMAINS A PRINCIPAL FOCUS OF WORLD BANK ACTIVITY. (SIGNED)
    NEB/BDW/FC/EH
    19-Sep-97 5:13 AM EDT (0913 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


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