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IMF drums up support for emerging markets, developing economies

Published by The Nation on Fri, 27 Mar 2020

Simeon EbuluMANAGING Director, International Monetary Fund (IMF), Kristalina Georgieva, has urged greater financial support for emerging markets and developing economies.Georgieva told an Extraordinary G20 Leaders Summit yesterday in Washington DC, the US capital, that developing economies were hard hit from the COVID-19 pandemic as a rash of withdrawals by foreign investors resulted in capital flight from those markets, coupled with the drastic drop in commodities prices.She said: It is paramount we recognise the importance of supporting emerging market and developing economies to overcome the brunt of the crisis and help restore growth.They find themselves particularly hard hit by a combination of health crisis, sudden stop of the world economy, capital flight to safety, andfor some sharp drop in commodity prices, saying these countries are the main focus of our attention.Georgieva said the IMF, working in league with the World Bank, has about $1trillion loan-able funds to support the recovery effort. We have a considerable $1 trillion strong financial capacity to place in their defence, working closely with the World Bank and other International Financial Institutions (IFIs), she said, admitting though that the challenge is enormous.She said exceptionally large number of countries simultaneously require IMF emergency financing, pointing out that emerging markets are dramatically impacted by record high capital outflows and severe shortage of foreign exchange liquidity.Read Also:IMF announces $50B emergency fund for COVID-19 fightShe noted that many low income countries, regrettably stepped into this crisis under a high burden of debt.Considering the impact of the pandemic, she called on the G-20 countries to work together with the IMF in view of the magnitude of the challenge.For us at the IMF, it means working with you to make our crisis response even stronger. For this, we ask your backing to double our emergency financing capacity to boost global liquidity through a sizeable SDR (Special Drawing Right) allocation, as we successfully did during the 2009 global crisis and by expanding the use of swap type facilities at the Fund, she said.Georgieva expressed gratitude to the Saudi presidency for calling this extraordinary summit so that the global community can close ranks to protect peoples lives and guard the world economy.She said the IMF expected a contraction of global output in 2020 and recovery in 2021.
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