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IMF di­rec­tor: Virus could dis­rupt global re­cov­ery

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WASH­ING­TON—THE head of the In­ter­na­tional Mon­e­tary Fund ( IMF) said Thurs­day that while the United States and other ma­jor economies turned in bet­ter- than- ex­pected eco­nomic per­for­mances in the third quar­ter, the world now faces slower mo­men­tum with a resur­gence in coron­avirus cases.

IMF Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor Kristalina Ge­orgieva said in a note pre­pared for a vir­tual meet­ing of the lead­ers of the Group of 20 ma­jor economies that sig­nif­i­cant progress on the vac­cines raised “hopes of van­quish­ing the virus that has taken more than a mil­lion lives and caused tens of mil­lions of job losses” around the world.

The G-20 vir­tual lead­ers sum­mit, which Saudi Ara­bia is con­duct­ing this week in its role as this year’s head of the G-20, will fo­cus on ef­forts to sta­bi­lize the global econ­omy and hope­fully, fos­ter a re­bound next year.

Last month, the IMF fore­cast that the global econ­omy would con­tract by an his­toric 4.4 per­cent this year and then mount a par­tial and un­even re­cov­ery, with global growth re­bound­ing by 5.2 per­cent next year.

“While a med­i­cal so­lu­tion is now in sight, the eco­nomic path ahead re­mains dif­fi­cult and prone to set­backs,” Ge­orgieva said. Many risks re­main, in­clud­ing the threat that new out­breaks may re­quire more strin­gent shut­downs, she said.

Such a de­vel­op­ment, she wrote in her memo to ac­com­pany the IMF’S G-20 sur­veil­lance re­port, would mean that “growth will be lower, pub­lic debt higher and the scars on the long- term po­ten­tial of the econ­omy more se­vere.”

It is im­por­tant that gov­ern­ments avoid a pre­ma­ture with­drawal of eco­nomic sup­port, Ge­orgieva said. She rec­om­mended that ma­jor economies con­sider a syn­chro­nized in­vest­ment in in­fra­struc­ture as a way to pro­vide jobs.

“The bot­tom line is that we can build the im­pe­tus for growth, jobs and ad­dress cli­mate change far more ef­fec­tively if we work to­gether,” she wrote.

The G-20 lead­ers’ sum­mits were be­gun in 2008 in an ef­fort to find ways for the world’s ma­jor economies to co­op­er­ate to ad­dress the global down­turn that oc­curred af­ter the 2008 fi­nan­cial cri­sis pushed the global econ­omy into a deep re­ces­sion.

In ad­di­tion to tra­di­tional eco­nomic pow­ers like the United States, Ja­pan, Ger­many, France and Britain, the G-20 in­cludes ma­jor de­vel­op­ing coun­tries such as China and In­dia.

 ?? AP ?? In this Fe­bru­ary 14, file photo, Kristalina Ge­orgieva, man­ag­ing di­rec­tor of the In­ter­na­tional Mon­e­tary Fund, at­tends a ses­sion on the first day of the Mu­nich Se­cu­rity Con­fer­ence in Mu­nich, Ger­many. Ge­orgieva said on Novem­ber 19, that while the United States and other ma­jor economies turned in bet­ter-than-ex­pected eco­nomic per­for­mances in the third quar­ter the world now faces slower mo­men­tum with a resur­gence in coron­avirus cases.
AP In this Fe­bru­ary 14, file photo, Kristalina Ge­orgieva, man­ag­ing di­rec­tor of the In­ter­na­tional Mon­e­tary Fund, at­tends a ses­sion on the first day of the Mu­nich Se­cu­rity Con­fer­ence in Mu­nich, Ger­many. Ge­orgieva said on Novem­ber 19, that while the United States and other ma­jor economies turned in bet­ter-than-ex­pected eco­nomic per­for­mances in the third quar­ter the world now faces slower mo­men­tum with a resur­gence in coron­avirus cases.

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