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    Global economy projected to grow at 6% in 2021, 4.4% in 2022: IMF

    07
    Apr '21
    Pic: Shutterstock
    Pic: Shutterstock
    The global economy is projected to grow at 6 per cent in 2021, moderating to 4.4 per cent in 2022, according to the upgrade to global growth announced recently by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in its World Economic Outlook. That is a big turnaround from an estimated contraction of 3.3 per cent in 2020 when the world was hit by the COVID-19 pandemic.

    “This reflects the additional fiscal support provided in the United States, vaccination efforts that are going to lead to a strengthening of recovery in the second half of this year, and also the continued resilience of economic activity to the pandemic in many parts of the world,” said IMF chief economist Gita Gopinath.

    Gopinath stressed that a high degree of uncertainty surrounds the IMF’s projections as the pandemic is yet to be defeated and virus cases are accelerating in many countries.

    That’s leading to diverging recoveries both across and within countries, as economies with slower vaccine rollout, more limited policy support, and more reliant on tourism do less well, an IMF press release said.

    “The biggest risk right now is still the pandemic, if there are new virus variants that evade the vaccine, then that could lead to a sharp downgrade. But if, on the other hand, there's faster roll out of vaccinations, then that could uplift the outlook,” said Gopinath.

    She also added that multi-speed recoveries could pose financial risks if interest rates in the United States rise further in unexpected ways. This could cause inflated asset valuations to unwind in a disorderly manner, financial conditions to tighten sharply, and recovery prospects to deteriorate, especially for some highly leveraged emerging markets and developing economies.

    “The second big risk is to financial conditions. We see multispeed recoveries and we have seen interest rates go up. If interest rates go up even further in a more disorderly fashion than that could have negative implications for several countries, especially for some highly vulnerable emerging and developing economies,” said Gopinath

    Policy makers will need to continue supporting their economies while dealing with more limited policy space and higher debt levels than prior to the pandemic, Gopinath added. This requires better targeted measures to leave space for prolonged support if needed.

    “Given that we are not out of the woods, it is very important for policy support to be continued in this crisis. Of course, countries are dealing with high debt levels, so they'll have to make sure this support is better targeted and well-tailored to countries specific economic conditions, the stage of the recovery they are in and the structural characteristics of the economy,” she said.

    She also urged central banks to keep access to money easy in the current environment.

    “Monetary policy should also remain accommodative while proactively addressing financial risks that we do see using macro prudential tools,” added Gopinath.

    Fibre2Fashion News Desk (DS)


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