The head of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Sunday said the global economy faces “perhaps its biggest test” since World War II in remarks ahead of the World Economic Forum in Switzerland.
“As policymakers and business leaders head to Davos, the global economy faces perhaps its biggest test since the Second World War,” IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva said in a statement.
“Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has compounded the Covid-19 pandemic — a crisis upon a crisis — devastating lives, dragging down growth, and pushing up inflation,” Georgieva added, saying that “we face a potential confluence of calamities.”
The statement also called for strengthening trade “by lowering trade barriers to alleviate shortages and lower the prices of food and other products” as well as to “diversify imports.”
It came ahead of this year’s World Economic Forum meeting in Davos, which marks the first time the event has been held in person since 2020.
During the event’s opening day, Ukrainian President Volodymr Zelensky addressed the conference via a video message as Russia’s war in his country remains at the forefront of discussions among the conference’s leaders and attendees.
“I wish every one of you wakes up in the morning with this on their mind: ‘What have I done for Ukraine today?’” Zelensky said in his remarks.
“Ukraine is short on time,” he also said.
“This year, the words ‘turning point’ are to become more than just a rhetorical phrase,” Zelensky added in reference to the meeting’s theme, “History at a Turning Point.”