• 05-OCT-2017

  • Cambridge, Massachusetts

  • SOURCE: IMF

IMF Economy Speech Harvard

The global economy is on an upswing, but now is not the time for complacency said IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde at Harvard on Thursday (October 5th).

"We must not let a good recovery go to waste," she said to students at the Harvard Kennedy School.

Lagarde also drew on John F. Kennedy's 1962 speech to US Congress where he said "pleasant as it may be to bask in the warmth of recovery... the time to repair the roof is when the sun is shining."

IMF research shows that the pain of making structural and labor reforms in periods of growth are far less costly than making changes during economic downturns.

The IMF will release its World Economic Outlook report on global growth rates Tuesday October 10 in Washington DC ahead of the Annual Meetings.

"The long-awaited global recovery is taking hold.It's taking roots. In July the IMF projected a 3.5 % global growth for 2017 and 3.6% global growth in 2018. And next week as indicated by Professor Summers we will be holding our Annual Meetings and it may well be that this coming forecast will be a little bit better than that!"

Climate change remains a key risk to future growth said Lagarde, and is a challenge which demands cooperation.

"Our research coming out next week shows the impact on climate change will result in cooperation because those suffering from it most have not much to do with it and those suffering less have caused most of it."

And governments must do a better job at unleashing women in the workforce, said Lagarde, pointing to research showing that empowering women and giving them access to loans and money will significantly boost national economies.

"Making sure that women can contribute to the economy, empowering them, giving them access to finance is just a no-brainer from an economic point of view."