On Saturday, at the Annual Meetings of the World Bank Group and the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the IMF’s Development Committee issued a communiqué on the transfer of resources to developing countries.
The Committee applauded the actions by developed and developing countries, with “strong support from multilateral financial institutions,” in averting what could have been a “catastrophic economic downturn.” It cited “economic resilience among many developing countries,” which it said were based on “sound policies in the years prior to the crisis,” as having “underpinned the effectiveness of the global response.”
Prior to the financial crisis, the Committee noted that developing countries had made significant, if uneven, progress to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), but the “food, fuel and financial crises have taken a heavy toll.” The Committee reiterated its commitment to achieve the MDGs by 2015, with a stronger focus on results. The Committee expressed its approval of the actions of multilateral financial institutions in supporting countries’ own responses to the crises, particularly those of the World Bank and the IMF, but called upon them to “continue identifying policies and instruments that could best assist in preventing and responding to future crises, reduce the risks to growth and increase prospects for a sustainable recovery.”
The Committee also stressed the “importance of world trade and investment in underpinning global economic recovery and growth,” urging “members to avoid all forms of protectionist measures.” Emphasizing the “prominent role that developing economies will play in global growth and trade,” the Committee supported the World Bank’s “continuous efforts in infrastructure, innovation and human capital investment.”
The Committee encouraged the continued implementation of the Post Crisis Directions framework that provides the World Bank with strategic guidance to help the institution prioritize, make trade-offs and maximize its development impact. The Committee acknowledged the work underway on results, and remarked that it expected the IMF to monitor and report on all the agreed reforms to ensure their timely and effective implementation. It commended the World Bank on opening access to data, tools and information and welcomed the continued efforts of the International Finance Corporation to contribute to stronger private sector development, and its efforts to mobilize additional resources.
Finally, the Committee also noted the progress made on the “governance and accountability” of the World Bank, especially with respect to “presidential selection and dual performance,” and reiterated the “importance of an open, merit-based and transparent process for the selection of the President of the World Bank and the importance of promoting staff diversity to reflect better the global nature of the World Bank.”