Remarks by World Bank Group President David Malpass at the Launch of IDA20 in Tokyo, Japan

 

Hello everyone and let me start by expressing my appreciation to you and the Japanese government for hosting us for this launch of the IDA20 replenishment, in which Japan has played such a leadership role. I would like to thank the Finance Minister personally for playing such a crucial part in this process. I would also like to thank and congratulate the colleagues gathered here in Tokyo today, coming from all over the world, for making IDA20 a successful replenishment.

Continue reading

Latin America isn’t at risk of a 1980s-style crisis (but an era of missed opportunities looms)

Food lines that stretch across multiple city blocks. Spiraling unemployment. Out-of-control inflation. Unsustainable debt. These issues, which traumatized many economies across Latin American in the 1980s, continue to reverberate today and,brazil_hero.jpg given current economic conditions, you could be forgiven for fearing that history is about to repeat itself.

However, the region’s biggest risk at present is not another “lost decade” fueled by financial crises, but rather a decade of missed opportunities. 

The debt crises of the 1970s and 1980s were searing experiences that find an echo in today’s troubles. Then, as now, Latin American countries had large debt loads. Then, as now, the global economy experienced unique macroeconomic shocks that sent inflation soaring (the Arab oil embargo then; the pandemic and Ukraine war now). And then, as now, central banks around the world – especially the US Federal Reserve – were raising rates to fight inflation.

 

Continue reading