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IMF lowers global economic forecasts

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has lowered its global economic forecasts mainly due to the unforeseen economic slowdown in the US and China, the world's top economies. Gita Gopinath, the IMF's No 2 official, said in the latest update of the World Economic Outlook that they project global growth this year to be at 4.4%, 0.5 percentage point lower than previously forecast. The IMF cited the rapid spread of the Omicron variant as among the major factors in the lowered forecast. The said variant had led to renewed mobility restrictions, increased labour shortages, and disrupted supplies in many countries. The IMF said global growth is expected to slow to 3.8% in 2023, a 0.2 percentage-point uptick from the previous forecast in October. Overall, Gopinath said the pandemic was now projected to result in cumulative economic losses of USD13.8tr through 2024, compared to the previous forecast of USD12.5tr.

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