Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund Kristalina Georgieva arrives for a Welcome Dinner at the Murabba Palace in Riyadh on February 22, 2020 during the G20 finance ministers and central bank governors meeting.
AFP/Fayez Nureldine
Coronavirus puts 'fragile' global recovery at risk: IMF to G20
Anuj Chopra (Agence France-Presse) - February 24, 2020 - 8:50am

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia — The deadly coronavirus epidemic could put an already fragile global economic recovery at risk, the IMF warned Sunday, as G20 financial chiefs voiced "real concern" over its economic ripple effects.

Global growth was poised for a modest rebound to 3.3 percent this year, up from 2.9 percent last year, International Monetary Fund chief Kristalina Georgieva said after a two-day meeting of G20 finance ministers and central bank governors in Riyadh.

But the projected recovery was "fragile", she warned, amid global alarm over rising Coronavirus cases in multiple countries even as Chinese authorities lock down millions of people to prevent its spread, with major knock-on effects for the world economy.

"The COVID-19 virus -- a global health emergency -- has disrupted economic activity in China and could put the recovery at risk," Georgieva said in a statement.

The virus has now claimed more than 2,400 lives in China, cutting off transportation, disrupting supply chains and fanning investor alarm as businesses are forced to close their doors.

Paris on Friday announced a host of measures to assist French companies affected by the fallout from the epidemic.

"We are ready to take any additional measures if necessary to cope with a possible worsening of the impact on the global economy," said French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire, who attended the G20 talks.

"The risk is now confirmed, and so is the impact on the global economy, and it is a real concern for all G20 members."

EU economic affairs commissioner Paolo Gentiloni said the G20 was ready to react with "pro-growth policies" to alleviate the downside risks.

"The main risk is the outbreak of the coronavirus and the consequences that this outbreak" could have are tied to the duration of the epidemic, Gentiloni told reporters in Riyadh.

'Stark reminder'

At the meeting in Saudi Arabia, the first Arab nation to hold the G20 presidency, financial leaders also discussed ways to achieve consensus on a global taxation system for the digital era.

Several leaders including Le Maire voiced hope for a "technical agreement" to tax digital giants -- a key bone of contention between the US and several European nations -- by July and a broader global deal by the end of 2020.

Le Maire said climate change was also part of the G20 discussion for the first time in three years.

But the impact from the new coronavirus outbreak formed the core of the discussions, along with an action plan to shield the world economy -- already facing a slowdown.

The gathered financial leaders vowed to "enhance global risk monitoring" of the outbreak, according to the G20 final communique. 

"We stand ready to take further action to address these risks," it said.

Georgieva told the Riyadh gathering that the outbreak would shave about 0.1 percentage points from global growth and constrain China's growth to 5.6 percent this year, in a baseline scenario.

"I reported to the G20 that even in the case of rapid containment of the virus, growth in China and the rest of the world would be impacted," she said.

The IMF projects a "V-shaped, rapid recovery" for the global economy, but given the uncertainty around the spread of the virus, Georgieva urged the financial leaders to prepare for "more adverse scenarios".

She warned the global economy faced other risks including rising debt levels in some countries, but in particular urged G20 nations to cooperate to contain the spread of the virus.

"COVID-19 is a stark reminder of our interconnections and the need to work together," Georgieva said. "In this regard, the G20 is an important forum to help put the global economy on a more sound footing."

2019-NCOV COVID-19 G20 INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND NOVEL CORONAVIRUS
As It Happens
LATEST UPDATE: April 3, 2020 - 12:58pm

Follow this page for updates on a mysterious pneumonia outbreak that has struck dozens of people in China.

April 3, 2020 - 12:58pm

The Philippine Health Insurance Corp. assures the public that they will shoulder the full cost of treatment for all COVID-19 patients until April 14, 2020.

"The reason for this accommodation window is due to the novelty and the wide range of severity of the disease in the country for which no existing case rate or package based on accepted protocols has yet been established," it says in a statement.

Philhealth says they will issue a new set of guidelines after the final protocol is established.

April 3, 2020 - 10:22am

The UN General Assembly has approved a resolution calling for "international cooperation" and "multilateralism" in the fight against COVID-19, in the first text to come out of the international body since the pandemic's outbreak.

The resolution, which was approved by consensus, also stresses "the need for full respect for human rights" and that "there is no place for any form of discrimination, racism and xenophobia in the response to the pandemic." — AFP

April 3, 2020 - 8:04am

The cruise ship Zaandam, which has dozens of ill passengers on board and was not allowed to dock in several South American countries, arrivsd Thursday in port in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

The liner was finally cleared for docking after long negotiations between Holland America Line, local and state officials, and the US Coast Guard, to ensure the safe disembarkation of the healthy — and the sick. — AFP

April 2, 2020 - 5:02pm

The Department of Health confirms 11 COVID-19 patients have died in the Philippines, raising the total number of fatalities to 107.

The Philippines also recorded 322 new coronavirus cases, bringing the national total to 2,633.

As of Thursday afternoon, one additional patient recovered from the deadly virus, bringing the total number of recoveries to 51.

April 2, 2020 - 3:52pm

The Department of Foreign Affairs through the Philippine Embassy in Washington DC and the Office of the Undersecretary for Migrant Workers Affairs has facilitated the repatriation of 900 Filipino seafarers of the Norwegian Dawn and Star, and MSC Armonia, Meraviglia, Seaside and Divina Cruise ships from Miami, Florida on Thursday morning.

All repatriated seafarers will undergo mandatory quarantine as precautionary measure before they go home. 

Philstar
  • Latest
  • Trending
Latest
Recommended
Are you sure you want to log out?
X
Login

Philstar.com is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

FORGOT PASSWORD?
SIGN IN
or sign in with