IMF more upbeat about global economy this year than in 2016

Director-General of the International Labour Organization Guy Ryder (left), Managing Director of the IMF Christine Lagarde (centre) and German Chancellor Angela Merkel attending a news conference following a meeting of the heads of international econ
Director-General of the International Labour Organization Guy Ryder (left), Managing Director of the IMF Christine Lagarde (centre) and German Chancellor Angela Merkel attending a news conference following a meeting of the heads of international economy and finance organisations at the Chancellery in Berlin, Germany, on April 10, 2017. PHOTO: REUTERS

BERLIN (REUTERS) - The International Monetary Fund sees a more favourable outlook for the global economy this year and next than in 2016, but it has concerns beyond the near term, IMF managing director Christine Lagarde said on Monday (April 10).

"Our forecast for 2017 and 2018 is certainly more favourable than what we have seen in 2016, and probably a bit more so than we had forecast previously," she said before the IMF releases its world economic outlook later this month.

"So there is a positive short-term outlook on the horizon, which is unfortunately tainted by the risks that are still there, and that lead us to be concerned about the risk of complacency," Lagarde added.

"I have also identified two key concerns that we at the IMF have: one is persistent low productivity and, second, excessive inequalities that grow together with that low productivity," she said after meeting the chiefs of other leading global economic organisations and German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin.

On the influence of US President Donald Trump's administration, Merkel said she had no reason to believe the IMF's mission was endangered in any way.