The IMF hopes that the US and its trading partners can avoid a trade war as more and more countries are announcing protectionist measures and retaliations, spokesman Gerry Rice told reporters Thursday (June 28) in Washington.
“Bilateral and regional agreements can bring important benefits by building on strong multilateral trade agreements; building on strong multilateral trade system that promotes transparency and includes well-enforce trade rules that promote even-handed competition.”
The IMF also welcomes moves by the Republic of Congo to take anti-corruption measures as that country seeks international aid measures, Rice said.
“The issues with Congo, the issue of corruption and governance is a big issue that's being discussed. We have made clear that the authorities will need to take bold and immediate governance reforms to put into effect their proclaimed intention to mark a break with past policies and practices. In that regard, we welcome the recent publication by the government -- of a governance study that will guide future reforms in the area of transparency, public finance management and overall governance. We also welcome in this context the authorities plan to establish an independent anti-corruption body with full investigation powers and an asset declaration system for high-level officials.”
The IMF Board plans to meet next on Congo July 11th, Rice announced.
And the IMF continues to see the Indian economy surging ahead by over seven percent per year, Rice said but there are key measures that the government in New Delhi can take to ensure that growth.
“In terms of sustained that high growth rate, maybe just three points. One, to revive a bank credit and enhance the efficiency of credit provision; by accelerating the cleanup of bank and corporate balance sheets and enhancing the government of public sector banks. We talked about that the last time I was here. That's point one. Point two, to continue fiscal consolidation; to lower elevated public debt levels supported by simplifying and streamlining the goods and services tax structure; and thirdly, over the medium-term, renew impetus to reforms of key markets. For example, labor and land, as well as improving the overall business climate. We believe would be crucial to improving competitiveness and again, maintaining that very high level of growth in India.”
Rice announced the IMF will release updated global growth and trade figures, including for India, in the World Economic Outlook update next month.
The full report will be available on IMF.org/WEO on July 16th.