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Upswing in global growth won’t last forever - IMF says world must prepare now for leaner times ahead

Quay cranes on docks in Sri Lanka. The global economy is critically dependent on the international merchant fleet of carriers and tankers to keep commodities moving swiftly, safely and efficiently.
Quay cranes on docks in Sri Lanka. The global economy is critically dependent on the international merchant fleet of carriers and tankers to keep commodities moving swiftly, safely and efficiently. Dominic Sansoni/IMF

“Global growth is projected to soften beyond the next couple of years,” said the report, explaining that: “Once their output gaps close, most advanced economies are poised to return to potential growth rates well below pre-crisis averages – held back by aging populations and lackluster productivity.”

Looking at the largest economies, the World Economic Outlook , the Fund’s semiannual report on the health of the international economy, shows growth projections at 2.4 per cent for the euro area, 1.2 per cent for Japan, 6.6 per cent for China and 2.9 per cent for the United States.

“Despite the good near-term news, longer-term prospects are more sobering,” said Maurice Obstfeld, Economic Counsellor and Director of Research at the IMF, the specialized United Nations agency working to ensure stability in the global financial system.

“Advanced economies – facing aging populations, falling rates of labor force participation, and low productivity growth – will likely not regain the per capita growth rates they enjoyed before the global financial crisis,” he continued.

Mr. Obstfeld painted a diverse picture for emerging and developing economies, saying that among non-commodity exporters, some countries can expect longer-term, pre-crisis type growth rates.

However, despite some improvement in the outlook for commodity prices, he pointed out that some exporters will need to diversify their economies to boost future growth and resilience.

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Last modified on Wednesday, 18 April 2018 16:23

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