Treasury Secretary Robert E. Rubin cautioned Tuesday that the global financial crisis is not over, though conditions have improved recently.
"We have come through a very difficult, I think, a very threatening situation," he told the President's Export Council, a panel of business, labor, and government leaders that advises the Clinton administration on international trade.
But "we are going to have a very complicated and trying time ahead of us."
Mr. Rubin repeated his call for reforms that would make world financial markets less susceptible to crises, and he warned the United States to brace for "a substantial increase" in its trade deficit. Long-term economic problems remain to be solved in South Korea and Thailand before the world economy can recover, he said. Also Japan must reform its banking system and stimulate its economy, he said.
He encouraged policymakers worldwide to continue promoting growth and free markets and resisting restrictions on trade and cross-border capital flows.