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Lagarde: The recovery is too weak

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Staff writer ▼ | April 4, 2014
Christine LagardeThe world economy is turning the corner of the great recession, but obstacles lie ahead to overcome low growth trap, said the International Monetary Fund (IMF) chief Christine Lagarde.

"Certainly the global economy has stabilized since the onset of the financial crisis, but the recovery is too weak for comfort," Christine Lagarde, managing director of the IMF, said in a speech at the School of Advanced International Studies of Johns Hopkins University in Washington, ahead of the 2014 IMF-World Bank Spring Meetings.

"Moreover, unless countries come together to take the right kind of policy measures, we could be facing years of slow and sub- par growth - well below the solid, sustainable growth that is needed to create enough jobs and improve living standards into the future," Ms. Lagarde said.

Lagarde said the IMF projects modest improvements in 2014 and 2015 for the world economy, compared with the 3 percent growth rate in 2013, but the recovery would remain below past trends.

Ms. Lagarde advised policymakers to be alert on short-term obstacles to sustained growth, including the potentially persistent low inflation period in the euro area, and the rise of geopolitical tensions as a result of Ukraine crisis, which she cautioned, could cloud the global economic outlook. "The situation in Ukraine is one which, if not well managed, could have broader spillover implications."

Ms. Lagarde called for coordinated actions to address unemployment, high debt and fiscal uncertainty, warning that the costs of continued sluggish growth are high.

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