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Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman calls for joint efforts to protect economies from shocks

The Russia-Ukraine war has driven by global crude oil and food prices, disrupted supply chains and posed renewed risks to macro-economic fundamentals of mainly poor and developing nations.

But even these revised forecasts are fraught with heightened uncertainties, with risks tilted to the downside, it has warned.
But even these revised forecasts are fraught with heightened uncertainties, with risks tilted to the downside, it has warned.

Global growth momentum has been obstructed by prolonged inflation, supply-chain disruption, volatility in energy markets and investor uncertainty, finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman has said, as she called on the G-20 nations to take the lead in shaping international policy co-ordination to deal with the “macroeconomic consequences”.

Participating in the meeting of G20 finance ministers and central bank governors in Washington, Sitharaman stressed “proactive collective efforts towards protecting economies”, the finance ministry said. The agenda of the meeting included global economic outlook and risk, international financial architecture and global health.

The Russia-Ukraine war has driven by global crude oil and food prices, disrupted supply chains and posed renewed risks to macro-economic fundamentals of mainly poor and developing nations.

The minister’s exhortation comes at a time when the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has revised down its global growth forecast for 2022 by 80 basis points from its January projection to 3.6% in the wake of the Ukraine crisis. It has cited severe double-digit drop in GDP for Ukraine and a steeper contraction in Russia, along with worldwide spill-overs through commodity markets, trade, and financial channels for the downward revision. It has also trimmed its FY23 growth forecast for India by 80 basis points to 8.2%. Similarly, the multilateral body has scaled down 2022 global trade growth forecast by 100 bps from its January prediction. But even these revised forecasts are fraught with heightened uncertainties, with risks tilted to the downside, it has warned.

FM hard-sells India’s semiconductor policy

Sitharaman met Semiconductor Industry Association of the US president and chief executive John Neuffer on the sidelines of the IMF-World Bank spring meetings in Washington on Thursday and hard-sold a $10-billion production-linked incentive scheme for semiconductor rolled out by the government recently to draw foreign investment. For his part, Neuffer pointed out that “he is upbeat about the initiatives taken by the government” to promote investment and appreciated India’s commitment to become a reliable player in the global supply chain, according to the finance ministry.

Sitharaman meets US commerce secy

Continuing with her series of bilateral meetings in Washington, the minister huddled with US secretary of commerce Gina Raimondo and discussed ways to further bolster economic cooperation.

Sitharaman has been on a visit to the US from Monday to attend the spring meetings of the IMF and the World Bank. She is taking part in the meetings of the finance ministers and central bank governors of the G20 nations.

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