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Thursday, April 17, 2014
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IMF to help Caribbean achieve ‘strong, inclusive growth’
WASHINGTON—The International Monetary Fund (IMF) says it will focus on assisting Caribbean and other member-countries move from stabilisation to growth in the coming months.
“The global recovery has been uneven and more subdued than hoped. Moving from stabilisation to strong, sustainable, balanced and inclusive growth remains a work in progress and requires more ambitious policy implementation,” said IMF managing director Christine Lagarde in presenting the Washington-based financial institution’s bi-annual work programme to executive board members.
The programme was considered by the IMF’s Executive Board on November 25, and builds on the October 2013 IMF Communiqué and Global Policy Agenda (GPA), “which identified a range of actions needed to break the cycle of subdued growth and recurrent market jitters that has characterised the global recovery to date”, the IMF said.
“The IMF will assist its members in delivering on this task, including through assessments and policy advice provided in the context of bilateral and multilateral surveillance, as well as capacity building and financial support,” Lagarde said. To achieve this objective, the lending agency will assist the Caribbean and other low-income countries in strengthening policy buffers against shocks and advance policies “to help achieve more inclusive growth going forward, with a particular focus on capacity building.”
In addition to assisting countries to boost growth, the work programme prioritises efforts in other areas, including strengthening fiscal policy frameworks to reduce vulnerabilities and address debt sustainability risks and examining how structural reforms can support growth and job creation.
The IMF will also facilitate “co-ordinated action and international co-operation on matters such as policy spillovers and global imbalances, including by better integrating the various strands of surveillance work with the analysis of multilateral policy consistency and cross-border spillovers.”
The international lending agency says it will support the “effective implementation of the global financial system reform agenda, monitoring and identifying risks to financial stability, and assisting efforts to deepen financial sectors in emerging and developing economies.” A number of Caribbean countries, including Jamaica and Antigua and Barbuda, have been subjected to IMF austerity measures.
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