India attends World Bank and IMF annual Meetings

Union Finance Minister, Smt Nirmala Sitharaman attended the Annual Meetings of the IMF and World Bank held in Washington DC

October 20, 2019

Leading the Indian delegation at the meetings, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman called for “concerted action” against global economic slowdown

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said that global economic risks and imbalances reinforce the need to boost global cooperation at the multilateral level

The Indian delegation raised the need of a policy framework to assess the vulnerability of economies to capital flows and develop strong surveillance mechanism

Finance Minister held bilateral meet with delegates from Russia, Kyrgyz Republic, Switzerland, Australia and the Maldives on the sidelines of the IMF meeting

The 40th annual meeting of the International Monetary and Financial Committee (IMFC) of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank Group was held in Washington DC October 19 onwards. The Indian delegation at the meeting, which focused on Global Developments and Prospects, was led by Union Finance Minister Smt Nirmala Sitharaman. 

Minister Sitharaman called upon nations to work together in the spirit of multilateralism for global growth. In her statement during the Development Committee meeting, she mentioned that increased trade integration, geopolitical uncertainties, and high accumulated debt necessitate strong global coordination. Trade wars and protectionism have generated uncertainties that are expected to impact the flow of capital, goods and services.

One prominent suggestion was that the International Monetary Fund (IMF) provide solutions that are specific to important growth geographies. Such focussed solutions will help troubleshoot current economic disturbances. IMF should evolve a policy framework that would assess the vulnerability of economies to capital flows. Developing stronger surveillance mechanism with sharper diagnostic tools can mitigate or even prevent the adverse effects on fragile economies. 

Global economic risks and imbalances reinforce the need to strengthen global cooperation at the multilateral level, besides governmental initiatives. Moreover, Ms. Sitharaman encouraged the IMF to guide concerted international action to combat illegal financial flows. 

On the sidelines of the major meeting, the Finance Minister also held bilateral meetings with her counterparts and delegates from Russia, Kyrgyz Republic, Switzerland, Australia and the Maldives to discuss ways to improve incomes, reduce deprivation and enhance living standards. The underlying intent was on pursuing investment-led growth that is sustainable, efficient and transparent in terms of the debt and tax policies. These investments must in turn generate domestic revenues, translating into effective public spending in health, education and skilling so that youth can benefit from economic growth.