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Focus on 3 opportunities offered by pandemic: IMF MD

Jun '20
Pic: Shutterstock
Pic: Shutterstock
Digital transformation, going green and building fairer societies are the three opportunities arising out of the COVID-19 pandemic that the industry should focus on as part of the recovery mission, according to International Monetary Fund (IMF) managing director Kristalina Georgieva, who recently told the US Chamber of Commerce that 75 per cent of countries are now reopening.

By the end of this year, 170 countries—almost 90 per cent of the world—will be worse off with lower per capita income. This is a reversal of the IMF forecast made in January that said 160 countries would finish the year with larger economies, and positive per capita income growth, she said.

In March, around a hundred billion dollars left emerging markets and developing countries—three times more than during the global financial crisis, she said.

On the risk side, the world will emerge from this crisis with more debt, higher deficits and—in all likelihood—higher structural unemployment and higher levels of poverty, she said.

Many organisations are not going back to the old pre-pandemic ways of working and hence, the industry will see a rapid modernisation in how it operates, she said. The world will also witness a tremendous expansion of e-commerce, e-learning, e-transfers, e-payments and e-governance.

A green economy can offer job opportunities and IMF is keen to provide incentives for countries and companies to move faster in this direction, she said.

As inequality tends to go up after a pandemic, so the importance of global trade in contributing to lower costs, higher incomes and lower levels of poverty should be recognised, she said.

“There would be a natural tendency after this pandemic for countries to turn inwards to build health security and build more independent operations. But we must guard against a dramatic retreat from globalisation,” she added.

Fibre2Fashion News Desk (DS)

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June 2021

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