The existing and increasing imbalances in international payments are particularly well visible in the current account deficit of the US and the surpluses of a number of other countries. It is a complex problem as the constantly growing foreign debt of the US puts forward a question concerning the limits to its growth as well as its potential implications for the American economy and the rest of the world. A possibility of a sudden fall down of the dollar threatens interest rates, stock exchanges and opens a way toward worldwide recession. The author dwells on remedial measures that might stave off a potential global crisis, advocating a multi–pronged strategy - an internationally coordinated effort. An important role would be played by modifications of economic policies pursued by the leading countries and the reform of international financial institutions, especially of the International Monetary Fund.