Brown to meet IMF and World Bank heads to prepare G20

LONDON (Reuters) - Prime Minister Gordon Brown will meet the heads of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank this week in preparation for an April summit on the global economic crisis, the government said on Monday.

Prime Minister Gordon Brown pauses during a visit to Corby Business Academy, February 13, 2009. REUTERS/Rui Vieira/Pool

Brown will hold talks with IMF Managing-Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn and World Bank President Robert Zoellick in London on Wednesday as he kicks off a week of intense diplomacy in preparation for the G20 meeting of leading advanced and emerging economies which Brown hosts on April 2.

“We will be setting out further detail of our proposals for the issues that should be discussed and considered at the G20 and the prime minister is likely to be doing that later this week,” Brown’s spokesman said.

Brown will also meet Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen in London on Wednesday before travelling to Rome on Thursday for talks with Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi.

“Italy has the chair of the G7 (group of major industrialised countries) so this will be an important meeting in terms of discussing the G7 and G20 agendas on the economy,” the spokesman said.

Brown will also have an audience with Pope Benedict at the Vatican City on Thursday, which is likely to focus on development issues, the spokesman said.

On Sunday, Brown travels to Berlin for a meeting of European members of the G20 chaired by German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

The leaders will discuss a joint strategy for the G20 summit.

The G7 industrial powers, fearing a 1930s-style resurgence of protectionism, pledged in Rome on Saturday to do all they could to combat recession without distorting free trade.

The London G20 summit, a follow-up to last November’s crisis meeting in Washington, aims to agree on coordinated actions to revive the global economy, on reforming and improving financial systems and on principles for reforming international financial institutions.

Reporting by Adrian Croft; Editing by