FM Sitharaman to leave for US to attend IMF-World Bank, G-20 meetings

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will depart for Washington DC late on Monday night to attend the annual meetings of World Bank and International Monetary Fund, as well as the G-20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors meetings.

As per an official statement by the Finance Ministry, Sitharaman will also take part in bilateral meetings on the sidelines of these events, including with Japan, South Korea, Saudi Arabia, Australia, Egypt, Germany, UAE, Iran and Netherlands.

“In a high-level meeting, the Finance Minister will meet the US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and David Malpass, President, World Bank separately to discuss issues of mutual interest,” the statement said.

Sitharaman will also participate in a fire side chat on “India’s Economic Prospects and Role in the World Economy” at the prominent think-tank, Brookings Institution, and will also speak at an event at the School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), John Hopkins University during the visit.

During the latter part of the visit, Sitharaman will attend roundtable meetings with US-India Business Council and US-India Strategic Partnership Forum on themes to ‘Strengthen Investment and Innovation in India-US Corridor’ and “Investing in India’s Digital Revolution”.

“These meetings with leading business leaders and investors are aimed at highlighting India’s policy priorities, and deliberate on measures to facilitate foreign investment by showcasing India’s attractiveness as an investment destination,” the statement said.

At the IMF-World Bank annual meeting, the issue which is expected to take centrestage is the ongoing war in Europe and its impact on the global economy. A number of advanced European and North American economies are expected to go into recession. While India and other emerging economies will be spared a recession, global trade is certain to be impacted.

The IMF, in its last World Economic Outlook update, cut the global growth forecast for 2022 by 0.4 percentage points to 3.2 percent, compared with 6.1 percent in 2021.

“Several shocks have hit a world economy already weakened by the pandemic: higher-than-expected inflation worldwide––especially in the United States and major European economies––triggering tighter financial conditions; a worse-than-anticipated slowdown in China, reflecting COVID- 19 outbreaks and lockdowns; and further negative spillovers from the war in Ukraine,” the IMF had said.

After the G-20 Bali Summit in Indonesia, India will take over the chair from December 1, 2022 to November 30, 2023. The main G-20 Heads of State Summit will be held in New Delhi in September 2023, but there will be various track meetings held across the country.

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