The Strategist

IMF names world economy's biggest challenge

06/17/2021 - 03:36

This year, the global economy must focus primarily on the task of vaccinating people, said International Monetary Fund (IMF) chief Kristalina Georgieva, quoted by CNBC. She described this as the main focus for efforts in the near future.

"Vaccination policy this year, and possibly next year, will be the most important part of economic policy, in terms of importance it could surpass even monetary and fiscal policy," Georgieva said. For the world to achieve sustained high levels of economic growth, everyone needs to be vaccinated, the IMF chief believes.

In April, the IMF said the end of the crisis was "increasingly visible". It based its estimate on a faster rate of vaccination and continued monetary and fiscal stimulus, predicting global growth of 6 percent this year and 4.4 percent next year. However, achieving that target depends heavily on how vaccination programs develop, including in poorer countries.

The IMF has also talked about the need to invest in speedy distribution of vaccines. It has proposed spending $50 billion on this, which could eventually generate $9 trillion in revenues for the global economy.

The IMF position on the need to support vaccination at the global level was echoed by Josep Borrell, the European Union's head of diplomacy. He said countries should share the coronavirus drugs with regions in need.

The World Bank has pointed to the backlog of vaccination programmes in poor countries. The organization noted that the coronavirus pandemic resulted in growing inequalities in the world.