The Fourth Asian Monetary Policy Forum Discusses Regional Economic and Financial Issues
Singapore, 26 May 2017…The Asian Monetary Policy Forum (AMPF) convenes for the fourth year at the Shangri-La Hotel in Singapore today. Held in conjunction with the annual conference of the Asian Bureau of Finance and Economic Research (ABFER) that took place from 22–25 May 2017, the Forum is co-organised and funded by the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, the National University of Singapore (NUS) Business School and the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS).
The AMPF offers a valuable platform for globally prominent academics, financial practitioners and policymakers to discuss monetary policy issues in the Asian context. The conference allows participants to exchange views and share insights in their areas of expertise, with the aim of raising the level of intellectual discourse on economic and monetary challenges confronting Asian policymakers. The organisers have been very encouraged by the high-level participation at this Forum and the great interest it has garnered over the years.
A joint ABFER/AMPF dinner last night marked the close of the annual ABFER conference, as well as the official opening of the AMPF. The dinner keynote speech was delivered by Professor Raghuram G. Rajan, Katherine Dusak Miller Distinguished Service Professor of Finance at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. Prof Rajan explained why industrial countries’ central banks embarked on unconventional monetary policies and what the effects have been. He then argued that this should give us a sense of what the consequences of exit might be. Finally, he addressed the issue of whether central banks have become politically vulnerable as a result of their existing mandate, and whether there is a need for some international “rules of the game” to limit undue monetary policy spillovers.
The AMPF programme today will begin with a keynote address by Dr. Willem Buiter, Global Chief Economist of Citigroup. Dr. Buiter will take stock of recent developments in the world economy and share his views on the pickup in global growth momentum. At the same time, he will highlight risks that appear to be underweighted by markets, such as a possible increase in trade protectionism, the rise of anti-immigration sentiment, structural reform challenges and geopolitical uncertainties.
Dr. Buiter’s address will be followed by the presentation of a commissioned paper by one of the world’s leading researchers on international economics and finance—Professor Jeffrey Frankel, James W. Harpel Professor of Capital Formation and Growth at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government. In his paper on “Systematic Managed Floating”, Professor Frankel revisits his earlier research spanning the last few decades on different exchange rate regimes and defines an intermediate system called “systematic managed floating”, whereby the central bank absorbs pressures on the currency through a combination of exchange rate flexibility and foreign exchange market intervention. He also empirically examines the issue of whether the choice of exchange rate regime makes a difference and finds that systematic managed floating allows the exchange rate to serve as a buffer to external shocks. The commissioned paper will be discussed by Professor Andrew Rose, Bernard T. Rocca Jr. Professor at the Haas School of Business, University of California, Berkeley and Professor Assaf Razin, Professor Emeritus at Tel Aviv University.
The afternoon segment of the AMPF consists of a panel dialogue between three distinguished policymakers and economists: Mr Tharman Shanmugaratnam, Deputy Prime Minister of Singapore, Coordinating Minister for Economic and Social Policies and Chairman of MAS; Dr. Jacob A. Frenkel, Chairman of JP Morgan Chase International; and Professor Raghuram G. Rajan. The panelists will discuss the current challenges confronting the global economy as well as the deeper reforms to the international monetary and financial architecture needed to secure long-term stability, with Professor Steven Davis as the moderator.
Professor Steven Davis, William H. Abbott Professor of International Business and Economics at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business remarked that “The Fourth Asian Monetary Policy Forum features an extraordinary group of policymakers and researchers, who will share their insights and perspectives on the global economy and the implications for economic policy. Chicago Booth is extremely pleased to partner with the Monetary Authority of Singapore, the NUS Business School and the Asian Bureau of Finance and Economic Research in sponsoring and organising this high-level, influential forum.”
Professor Bernard Yeung, Dean and Stephen Riady Distinguished Professor at NUS Business School, said: “AMPF has defined itself as a vital platform that allows prominent policymakers, practitioners and scholars to exchange deep insights on pertinent Asian economic, financial and monetary policy issues within the global context. The continual involvement of very highly respected speakers and participants is testament to the forum’s significance and impact on research, policymaking and management. We are grateful to their support and their profound intellectual contributions. NUS Business School is honoured to join MAS, Chicago Booth and ABFER in organising the Forum.”
Mr Edward Robinson, Assistant Managing Director (Economic Policy) & Chief Economist, MAS, said: “MAS is extremely pleased that the Asian Monetary Policy Forum in its fourth year continues to provide a platform for casting a timely spotlight and enhanced analytical lenses on macroeconomic and financial issues of great relevance to this region. At a time of opportunity but also of lingering uncertainty, this year’s event has once again attracted outstanding scholars, leading practitioners and top policymakers to share their profound insights on the global economy and functioning of the international monetary system. MAS is delighted to once again join our partners Chicago Booth, ABFER and NUS Business School in sponsoring this Forum, and facilitating the diffusion of knowIedge capital in the form of economic and financial policy-relevant research.”