Growth in a Time of Crisis: What's Ahead for Developing Economies

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Growth in a Time of Crisis: What's Ahead for Developing Economies

Follow the event on Twitter #Growth4All

The opening public event of this year’s Annual Meetings – Growth in a Time of Crisis: What’s Next for Developing Economies – delved into questions like these:

  • How can countries build back to a sustainable, resilient, and inclusive economic recovery while also investing in their people? 
  • What are the fundamental barriers to sustainable and inclusive growth in low and middle-income countries and fragile and conflict-affected settings, and what does the future of growth look like?
  • What types of policies are important to support inclusive growth for vulnerable populations? How can digital technology help ensure inclusion?
  • What’s needed to support private investment, especially small and medium enterprises, and create jobs in developing countries?
  • What role can central banks play to help spur job creation and investment?

We heard from World Bank Group President David Malpass and World Bank Group Chief Economist Carmen Reinhart, as well as other high-profile experts, policymakers, private sector leaders and civil society representatives on the way forward for developing countries. 

Felix Mlusu, Malawi's Minister of Finance; Elliott Harris, UN Assistant Secretary-General for Economic Development and Chief Economist; and Husna Ahmad, CEO of Global One 2015, discussed how to support inclusive growth and reverse the negative impact of the pandemic on poverty and shared prosperity for the bottom 40% of the population.

Ali Allawi, Iraq's Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance; Maya Chorengel, co-managing partner at The Rise Fund; and Pia Tayag, Director at the office of the UN Secretary General's Special Advocate for Inclusive Finance for Development (UNSGSA), focused on how to increase private investment and create jobs in middle-income countries. Reza Baqir, Governor of the State Bank of Pakistan, reflected on the role of central banks in helping countries pull through this global crisis.

Throughout, the interactive and inclusive event reflected the voices of youth, heads of state and small business owners. View the event replay on World Bank Live!

Event Program

The event will be divided into three different discussions, interspersed with videos or segments in other formats featuring diverse voices — including women and youth — with a focus on jobs. 

A conversation with World Bank Group Chief Economist Carmen Reinhart on how to support sustainable economic growth in middle-income countries (MICs) and low-income countries (LICs) and broaden the economic recovery.

How to support inclusive growth to reverse the negative impact of the pandemic on poverty and shared prosperity.

How to increase private investment, especially for small-medium enterprises (SMES) and create jobs.

Poll Results

Top voted questions from the audience

255 VOTES / Kponlawon B. Goanue
How can a low-income country experience growth in a time of crisis when there are systemic corruption and a lack of accountability within the governing structure of that economy?

124 VOTES / Neema Bimbiga
What is the biggest economic problem facing developing countries?

88 VOTES / Makheti Alex
Is there any plan by the World Bank to support small-scale manufacturers at the local level, or even home-based productions, to ensure the practicability of entrepreneurship?

71 VOTES / Shanmuganathan Helanjanani
How can we develop the rural economy sector in the COVID-19 pandemic situation?

66 VOTES / Pravesha
How can we get the participation of the younger population to contribute towards an inclusive, sustainable economy that enables us to move towards a speedy economic recovery?

Read the transcript


  • 0:00 [Upbeat Music]
  • 0:02 [Annual Meetings 2021]
  • 0:24 [GROWTH IN A TIME OF CRISIS: WHAT'S AHEAD FOR THE DEVELOPING ECONOMIES?]
  • 0:36 Welcome to everyone in our virtual audience around the world.
  • 0:39 We’re glad you could join us for the World Bank Group-IMF Annual Meetings
  • 0:43 here in Washington.
  • 0:45 For this kickoff event about Growth in a Time of Crisis:
  • 0:49 What's Ahead for Developing Economies.
  • 0:52 I'm Michelle Fleury, and I'm coming to you live
  • 0:54 from the World Bank Group's headquarters here in Washington, DC.
  • 1:00 Global growth is set to reach 5.6% in 2021
  • 1:04 the strongest post recession pace in 80 years.
  • 1:08 Nonetheless, the recovery is expected to be highly uneven
  • 1:11 and there is substantial uncertainty about the strength and durability
  • 1:16 of this anticipated upturn beyond 2021.
  • 1:20 Current signs of recovery may be fleeting and underscore
  • 1:22 the need for policymakers in emerging market
  • 1:25 and developing economies to drive a policy reform agenda
  • 1:28 that will enhance future growth, shared prosperity,
  • 1:32 private sector investment, and job creation.
  • 1:35 In addition, the Pandemic has amplified
  • 1:37 the existing social and economic gap, such as those between men and women.
  • 1:41 Women have lost jobs at a faster rate than men,
  • 1:44 and women-led firms have been more strongly affected
  • 1:48 than firms led by men.
  • 1:50 We'll explore all of these important issues
  • 1:53 with three distinguished panels.
  • 1:55 Let's take a quick look at what we have lined up for you.
  • 1:58 [Upbeat Music]
  • 2:01 [VIRTUAL ANNUAL MEETINGS 2021] [COMING UP]
  • 2:06 [AVOIDING A DECADE OF LOST GROWTH]
  • 2:07 [DAVID MALPASS, PRESIDENT, WORLD BANK GROUP]
  • 2:10 [BUILDING AN INCLUSIVE RECOVERY]
  • 2:12 [CARMEN REINHART, CHIEF ECONOMIST, WORLD BANK GROUP]
  • 2:15 [RESTORING GROWTH IN LOW-INCOME COUNTRIES]
  • 2:17 [FELIX MLUSU, MINISTER OF FINANCE, MALAWI]
  • 2:18 [HUSNA AHMAD, CEO, GLOBAL ONE 2015]
  • 2:20 [ELLIOT HARRIS, ASSISTANT SECRETARY-GENERAL, UNITED STATES]
  • 2:25 [PROMOTING JOBS AND RESILIENT, INCLUSIVE GROWTH]
  • 2:27 [ALI ALLAWI, DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER AND MINISTER OF FINANCE, IRAQ]
  • 2:28 [REZA BAQIR, GOVERNOR, CENTRAL BANK OF PAKISTAN]
  • 2:31 [MAYA CHORENGEL, CO-MANAGING PARTNER, THE RISE FUND]
  • 2:32 [PIA TAYAG, DIRECTOR, OFFICE OF UNSGSA]
  • 2:37 [Michelle Fleury] As you can see quite a lineup.
  • 2:39 Now before our first discussion, let's hear from
  • 2:41 World Bank Group President David Malpass
  • 2:44 on how the developing countries can avoid losing a decade of growth.
  • 2:50 Good day and welcome to the 2021 Annual Meetings.
  • 2:53 We start the week with a topic that is on everyone's minds,
  • 2:57 [WASHINGTON DC]
  • 2:57 [David Malpass] Growth in a time of crisis,
  • 2:59 What's ahead for developing economies?
  • 3:02 In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic,
  • 3:04 we confront a looming era of reversals
  • 3:07 of the development achievements of the last decades.
  • 3:11 GDP will return next year to pre-pandemic levels
  • 3:14 in many emerging and developing economies,
  • 3:17 but per capita income will take more time to reach 2019 levels.
  • 3:22 In many countries, the recovery is even slower
  • 3:24 and full of complex challenges.
  • 3:28 Poverty increased, and the gap between
  • 3:29 the poorest and the wealthiest is widening.
  • 3:32 While the incomes of the top 40% rebounded quickly,
  • 3:36 the recovery has not started for the bottom 40%.
  • 3:40 The result has been a substantial increase in global poverty,
  • 3:44 with nearly 100 million additional people living in extreme poverty
  • 3:49 and with several hundred million new poor
  • 3:52 using the middle-income country poverty lines.
  • 3:55 We've also seen significant reversals in gender equality,
  • 3:59 educational attainment, and even nutrition.
  • 4:03 At the same time, the COVID-19 crisis has brought about
  • 4:06 unprecedented structural transformation,
  • 4:09 with a recent surge in the number of newly established firms,
  • 4:14 expanded venture capital, and proliferation of innovations
  • 4:18 across sectors using digital means.
  • 4:22 In this time of upheaval,
  • 4:24 the question in front of the development community is,
  • 4:27 what should we do to avoid a lost decade
  • 4:30 and boost growth that's both inclusive and sustainable?
  • 4:34 I hope we can aspire to do more in two ways.
  • 4:37 First, we need much bigger scale for impact,
  • 4:41 and second, we need a stronger focus on key priorities
  • 4:45 with poverty alleviation at the center of the effort.
  • 4:49 As a pre-condition to the work ahead, acceleration of vaccinations
  • 4:53 to enable a return to normalcy is indispensable.
  • 4:58 But there are also four areas in which determined action
  • 5:01 should make a difference.
  • 5:02 First, economic stability,
  • 5:04 laying the groundwork for medium term growth.
  • 5:07 Developing countries increase drastically their public debt
  • 5:10 due to the pandemic and cannot keep doing whatever it takes.
  • 5:14 The time has come to start charting a gradual path toward consolidation,
  • 5:20 one that keeps the welfare of citizens as the guiding principle.
  • 5:24 Enhancing and simplifying tax structures
  • 5:28 while eliminating wasteful public expenditures,
  • 5:31 increasing the efficiency of service delivery
  • 5:34 and reallocating resources
  • 5:36 toward their most productive uses will be essential.
  • 5:40 But the transition needs to be well calibrated
  • 5:43 considering country conditions, including current fiscal space,
  • 5:47 monetary policy given inflationary pressures,
  • 5:51 real sector dynamics and risks ahead.
  • 5:55 Second, we need to leverage the digital revolution.
  • 5:59 It opens the opportunity to fundamentally transform
  • 6:02 many sectors of the economy, such as finance, services,
  • 6:06 education, health, and even agriculture.
  • 6:10 It also offers transformative impacts for the public sector.
  • 6:14 This revolution requires scaling up resources
  • 6:17 for investments in digital infrastructure,
  • 6:20 the elimination of monopolies in the telecom sector,
  • 6:24 national IDs for the population,
  • 6:27 and an enabling regulatory environment.
  • 6:31 Third, we need to make development greener and more sustainable.
  • 6:35 Supporting the energy transition toward cleaner generation sources
  • 6:40 is the most obvious entry point.
  • 6:42 Halting the creation of new coal-fired plants
  • 6:45 and decommissioning existing ones
  • 6:47 will be expensive, but it needs to happen.
  • 6:51 Win-win solutions in transport, agriculture, forestry,
  • 6:55 and urbanization should improve
  • 6:57 both living standards and environmental sustainability.
  • 7:02 Efforts need to focus on the most impactful engagements.
  • 7:06 The major sources of greenhouse gas emissions
  • 7:08 need to be reduced
  • 7:10 while at-risk populations in low income countries
  • 7:13 would need much better preparedness and adaptation.
  • 7:18 And fourth, investing in people is the best investment we can make.
  • 7:22 Functional education and effective healthcare systems
  • 7:26 require more than providing budgetary resources
  • 7:29 in an efficient and prioritized way.
  • 7:32 They need also to find scalable solutions
  • 7:35 to enhance quality of health services
  • 7:38 and improve children's learning, including through digital means.
  • 7:43 Nowhere is human capital accumulation
  • 7:46 more important than in conflict affected countries.
  • 7:49 Finally, the equity and economic returns
  • 7:52 of closing gender gaps in developing countries,
  • 7:55 which worsen during the crises are massive.
  • 7:59 None of this will be easy,
  • 8:01 but the World Bank Group is uniquely endowed in position
  • 8:04 to support countries in their efforts
  • 8:06 while mobilizing private sector participation.
  • 8:09 We will be discussing these issues and more during today's event.
  • 8:16 [Michelle Fleury] Let's pick up now on some of the points
  • 8:17 raised there by President Malpass.
  • 8:19 I'm joined by the chief economist of the World Bank Group,
  • 8:22 Carmen Reinhart.
  • 8:23 Thank you for joining us.
  • 8:24 You have been quoted in the past as saying,
  • 8:26 “don't mistake a rebound for a recovery”.
  • 8:29 What do you mean by that?
  • 8:31 What does that mean exactly in the context of an inclusive recovery?
  • 8:38 [Carmen Reinhart] We had exceptional declines
  • 8:41 in output and GDP almost across the world in 2020.
  • 8:48 So we're going to get a rebound.
  • 8:50 We are indeed seeing rebounds.
  • 8:51 Now, by recovery what I really mean is that
  • 8:56 on a per capita basis,
  • 8:58 income per person is at least where it was before the pandemic
  • 9:02 that'll take longer,
  • 9:04 so notwithstanding what we're seeing in rebounds
  • 9:07 incomes per capita,
  • 9:08 especially for the low-income countries and the middle-income countries,
  • 9:13 that true recovery will take longer.
  • 9:17 And I'm afraid that what this has done
  • 9:21 is widen the disparity between the advanced economies
  • 9:25 and the emerging markets in developing countries.
  • 9:28 [Michelle Fleury] Now you've talked a lot, you've been on the record talking a lot
  • 9:30 about the high debt levels
  • 9:31 that governments have had to take on to try,
  • 9:34 and if you like, buffer their populations, businesses
  • 9:37 from the negative impacts of the pandemic.
  • 9:39 The World Bank, I understand, just released a report today on this.
  • 9:42 Can you talk to me a bit more about the significance of that
  • 9:45 and what is in that report?
  • 9:49 [Carmen Reinhart] I think the build up in debt across the world,
  • 9:52 advanced, middle-income, low-income countries
  • 9:56 in response to the Pandemic has meant that
  • 10:00 for those that are among the low-income countries
  • 10:03 that entered with a lot of vulnerabilities already pre-existing
  • 10:08 are finding themselves already in debt distress.
  • 10:11 This is not a hypothetical what if or what that.
  • 10:14 At the moment of the 73 low-income countries
  • 10:19 that are eligible for the Debt Service Suspension initiative,
  • 10:23 more than half of those countries are either in debt to stress
  • 10:27 or quickly approaching at a high risk of debt distress,
  • 10:31 which means that debt restructuring,
  • 10:34 debt forgiveness will have to remain a very big issue
  • 10:40 in the development agenda going forward.
  • 10:42 [Michelle Fleury] Of course, the stress isn't just limited to governments.
  • 10:45 I mean, we're looking at households, businesses or individuals.
  • 10:48 [Carmen Reinhart] Absolutely.
  • 10:50 In effect, our next World Development Report
  • 10:54 focus is very much on the distress that's a legacy of COVID-19,
  • 11:00 firms that are finding themselves unable to establish tourism, services.
  • 11:09 All these industries are really impacted for the long haul.
  • 11:12 They have a lot of debt distress.
  • 11:15 Households were job losses and insufficient income support
  • 11:21 has been unavailable means odds of debt distress increase collectively.
  • 11:28 What we're seeing is governments, households, firms,
  • 11:33 all facing the legacy of the income and wealth losses
  • 11:40 associated with COVID-19.
  • 11:42 Big question ahead of the big challenge is
  • 11:46 moving forward to make sure that
  • 11:50 the COVID-19 crisis doesn't morph into a financial crisis
  • 11:55 where financial institutions are also impacted.
  • 12:02 Such a negative outcome would be a big head wind
  • 12:08 to a green, inclusive recovery, which is what we all want.
  • 12:12 [Michelle Fleury] I mean, given the huge challenges you've just laid out there,
  • 12:16 what role in that context can the World Bank play?
  • 12:20 [Carmen Reinhart] First of all, I think the World Bank, as you know,
  • 12:25 we've had a record in lending during the Pandemic.
  • 12:32 157 billion in lending.
  • 12:41 Since the start of the multilateral framework in World War Two,
  • 12:47 we haven't seen such a cohesive outreach to over 100 countries.
  • 12:52 [CARMEN REINHART ON GROWTH OPPORTUNITIES AFTER COVID-19]
  • 12:53 I think going forward, the World Bank is working with countries
  • 13:00 not only to continue on the vaccine front.
  • 13:04 It's involvement in inclusive and financial inclusion
  • 13:12 is a big agenda to temper the effects of,
  • 13:18 as I noted earlier, inequality, rising poverty rates.
  • 13:24 The World Bank has a fresh agenda on climate.
  • 13:30 So these are all areas where the needs are great
  • 13:35 and they're greater across a very broad array of countries
  • 13:41 ranging from the middle-income to the lowest-income
  • 13:45 that are so hard hit by the pandemic.
  • 13:47 [Michelle Fleury] Thank you for that summary of some of the problems
  • 13:49 but also some of the actions that can be taken.
  • 13:52 The economic effects of the pandemic
  • 13:55 have had a particularly devastating impact
  • 13:57 on youth around the world.
  • 13:58 [COMING NEXT: YOUTH PERSPECTIVES ON COVID-19 CHALLENGES]
  • 13:59 We asked some young people to tell us about the impact of COVID-19.
  • 14:02 on their economic wellbeing.
  • 14:04 What needs to happen to ensure
  • 14:05 young people aren't left out of this recovery?
  • 14:11 [SANTA LUCIA] [KEITHLIN CAROO, ONE YOUNG WORLD AMBASSADOR]
  • 14:12 Paradise is lost.
  • 14:14 That is invariably how I feel as an islander living in the pandemic.
  • 14:19 [PANAMA][MANUEL RAMOS NAVAS] COVID-19 has definitely affected
  • 14:24 the health and economy of thousands of Panamanians.
  • 14:27 [Keithlin Caroo] The lifeblood of our island which is tourism
  • 14:30 came to a screeching halt.
  • 14:32 [SOUTH KOREA] [SUNGHEE TARK]
  • 14:33 Farming communities have been [inaudible speech] touched.
  • 14:35 [OMAN] [RUMAITHA AL BUSAIDI]
  • 14:36 It has exposed many of our systemic flaws
  • 14:38 in our local and global systems.
  • 14:40 [TOGO] [YOUSSAKA ESSODONG FIDELE] As a result, many young people lost their jobs
  • 14:43 [NETHERLANDS] [SALAM AL-NUKTA] And had to skip almost half a year of education
  • 14:46 due to lack of infrastructure.
  • 14:48 [TURKEY] [ELIK KORKMAZ] For the students who were living in the rural areas
  • 14:50 and who didn't have enough sources,
  • 14:52 keeping up with online education was so hard,
  • 14:55 [UGANDA] [GEROME KWILYAME] and have a negative impact on their health,
  • 14:58 behavior and social development.
  • 15:01 [BRAZIL][MARIANA LOZZI] It's very likely that someone
  • 15:04 is going to ask you for help.
  • 15:06 They are going to turn you for money, food, medicine.
  • 15:10 [MALAYSIA] [JONATHAN CHU] Many had to take on
  • 15:12 bank loans or extra jobs just to support their families.
  • 15:16 [Youssaka Essodong Fidele] I found that most of the jobs offers
  • 15:19 require a professional training in a specific field.
  • 15:22 [Mariana Lozzi] A lot of people that had shifted
  • 15:26 to middle-income lifestyle,
  • 15:29 they are going back to poverty.
  • 15:31 [Keithlin Caroo] Our country was scrambling to strengthen
  • 15:34 alternative sectors while grappling with widespread unemployment
  • 15:38 [Inaudible speech] raising levels of poverty and violence.
  • 15:42 [Mariana Lozzi] The same challenges are hunting us back against:
  • 15:45 hunger, food insecurity.
  • 15:47 [Manuel Ramos Navas] It has helped in the increase of insecurity
  • 15:50 [KAZAKHSTAN][DILNAZ KAMALOVA] This unsettling feeling of uncertainty.
  • 15:53 [Keithlin Caroo] But in the midst of obstacles
  • 15:55 always comes opportunities.
  • 16:00 [Upbeat Music]
  • 16:01 [KHARTOUM, SUDAN] Hi, I'm Anita Min in Khartoum, Sudan and you are watching
  • 16:05 the World Bank Group and IMF's Annual Meetings.
  • 16:11 [Michelle Fleury] Some really interesting ideas there.
  • 16:13 We're going to be hearing more from young people
  • 16:15 around the world and their thoughts
  • 16:16 on future opportunities and hopes a little bit later.
  • 16:20 There are lots of ways that you can share
  • 16:22 your ideas and comments on this event.
  • 16:25 I'm joining by Sri Sridhar who can tell us a little bit more.
  • 16:28 [Sri Sridhar] Thanks Michelle.
  • 16:29 There are a lot of ways for folks to take part today.
  • 16:31 You can follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram
  • 16:33 and share your comments at any time
  • 16:35 using the hashtag for today's event which is Growth for all.
  • 16:38 You can also post your questions and comments
  • 16:40 directly on live.worldbank.org.
  • 16:43 Now the event is being streamed at
  • 16:44 English, Spanish, French and Arabic.
  • 16:46 We've actually got experts standing by in all four languages
  • 16:49 to answer questions.
  • 16:49 In fact, you can see some of them right here, which is pretty cool.
  • 16:53 I believe some of the most popular questions
  • 16:55 will be answered here or later today.
  • 16:57 [Michelle Fleury] Yes, I think we're going to be rejoined by
  • 16:58 by Carmen Reinhart, Chief Economist here at the Bank
  • 17:01 and also by Susan Lund, who is the Vice President,
  • 17:03 Economics and Private Sector Development at IFC,
  • 17:07 a member of the World Bank Group focused on the private sector.
  • 17:10 We also have a poll, right?
  • 17:12 [Sri Sridhar] We do, the first or four polls for this week.
  • 17:14 Today's poll asks
  • 17:15 what is the best way to boost inclusive economic growth?
  • 17:19 We've got four options here and is it going to be
  • 17:21 by creating jobs and increasing private investments through policy reforms,
  • 17:27 by expanding vaccine distribution,
  • 17:29 or is it by investing in safety nets that focus on vulnerable populations
  • 17:33 You can head on over to live.worldbank.org
  • 17:36 and cast your vote before the pool closes.
  • 17:38 [Michelle Fleury] So that's it. Get voting now.
  • 17:41 We also want to bring you
  • 17:42 some voices from leaders of the developing world,
  • 17:45 heads of States from seven countries
  • 17:47 that are supported by the International Development Association,
  • 17:51 that's the World Bank's fund for the poorest.
  • 17:53 And in these clips they share what they need
  • 17:56 to bring their economies back to health.
  • 18:01 [JULIUS MAADA BIO, PRESIDENT, SIERRA LEONE]
  • 18:02 The unprecedented challenges of COVID-19
  • 18:04 have further exposed nations to heightened vulnerabilities
  • 18:09 and to rethink delivery on SDGs.
  • 18:13 [MACKY SALL, PRESIDENT, SENEGAL] Of course, like most countries,
  • 18:17 our economic activity ground almost to a complete halt.
  • 18:23 [MOHAMED BAZOUM, PRESIDENT, NIGER]
  • 18:23 We've gone from a projection of 6% annual growth to about 3%.
  • 18:29 [DAVID KABUA, PRESIDENT, MARSHALL ISLANDS]
  • 18:30 As a small island state, our country faces unique challenges
  • 18:34 including geographic isolation, rising sea levels and climate change impact.
  • 18:39 We have also faced the challenge of COVID-19.
  • 18:43 [IRFAAN ALI, PRESIDENT, GUYANA]
  • 18:43 The uneven global response to the pandemic has not helped.
  • 18:47 Great attention must be paid to strengthen resilience,
  • 18:50 particularly for the most vulnerable countries.
  • 18:54 [FAURE ESSOZIMMA GNASSINGBÉ, PRESIDENT, TOGO]
  • 18:55 Because we have seen that this is a crisis
  • 18:57 that comes in waves or cycles,
  • 18:59 it is key that we are able, like other regions,
  • 19:04 to very quickly reactivate our economies.
  • 19:06 [HAKAINDE HICHILEMA, PRESIDENT, ZAMBIA]
  • 19:07 There's an urgent need to enhance Africa's capacity
  • 19:10 for innovation and development of ICT infrastructure
  • 19:13 to realize and enjoy the benefits arising from industry 4.0.
  • 19:19 [Julius Maada Bio] Let me conclude by reiterating the call
  • 19:22 for partnerships and corporation to deliver on SDGs
  • 19:26 in order to achieve the future we want.
  • 19:34 [Michelle Fleury] To really understand the urgency of the challenges
  • 19:36 those leaders are facing, let's take a closer look at the data.
  • 19:40 This pandemic has hit the world's poorest hardest.
  • 19:44 Just take a look at the impact
  • 19:45 on global income distribution over the last two years.
  • 19:49 This is what happened in 2020.
  • 19:52 You can see the richest 20% had incomes 5% lower than
  • 19:57 pre-pandemic projections,
  • 19:59 but for the poorest fifth that loss stood at 6.6%.
  • 20:04 While the incomes of the richest have begun to recover in 2021,
  • 20:08 this is not true for the poorest.
  • 20:10 Let's show you the World Bank Group's latest data on income losses
  • 20:14 and you can see that for the very poorest,
  • 20:17 the loss is even greater, 6.7% lower than projected
  • 20:21 before the pandemic.
  • 20:22 But for the wealthier, there are clear signs of recovery
  • 20:25 with average incomes now only 2.6% lower than
  • 20:28 pre pandemic projections.
  • 20:31 In addition to this rising inequality,
  • 20:34 we're also witnessing a substantial increase in global poverty.
  • 20:38 Now, let's take a look at the latest data on extreme poverty.
  • 20:41 How many people live on less than $1.90 per day?
  • 20:47 This line shows you how poverty was falling
  • 20:51 and expected to continue to fall before this crisis,
  • 20:55 and then the shocking impact of the pandemic
  • 20:58 causing those projections to reverse.
  • 21:02 In all, the World Bank Group now estimates
  • 21:05 that 97 million additional people are living in extreme poverty
  • 21:11 because of COVID-19.
  • 21:14 New World Bank data released today also shows that
  • 21:16 the external debt owed by low income countries
  • 21:19 rose to a record 860 billion US dollars in 2020,
  • 21:24 12% increase over the year before.
  • 21:27 And that's that as you can see here,
  • 21:29 5.3% is the external debt levels
  • 21:32 of both low and middle-income countries.
  • 21:34 It rose to that level to $8.7 trillion US dollars in 2020.
  • 21:42 So how can we support inclusive growth
  • 21:45 to reverse those negative impacts of the pandemic
  • 21:48 on poverty and shared prosperity?
  • 21:50 Low-income countries
  • 21:52 and the poorer people within those countries
  • 21:54 have suffered the most.
  • 21:55 So how can we help them regain momentum?
  • 21:58 That's the question I put to a distinguished panel of guests earlier.
  • 22:02 I'm joined by the Honorable Felix Mlusu, Minister of Finance for Malawi,
  • 22:09 Elliot Harris who is the United Nations Assistant Secretary-General
  • 22:12 for Economic Development and Chief Economist.
  • 22:15 And lastly, Husna Ahmad, CEO of Global One 2015,
  • 22:20 a Muslim woman led international development NGO
  • 22:24 that uses faith and culture as tools for change.
  • 22:28 Minister, if I could turn to you first,
  • 22:31 what do you see as the main barriers to economic growth
  • 22:36 as a leader in a low-income country?
  • 22:39 [Felix Mlusu] Thank you very much for that question.
  • 22:43 The main barriers for economic growth
  • 22:48 for low-income countries, obviously, are many.
  • 22:53 Starting with limited in fiscal space.
  • 22:59 For low-income countries, for them to find their [Inaudible speech] programs.
  • 23:05 They obviously limited in financial resources,
  • 23:08 therefore, they cannot fully fund the government problems.
  • 23:15 There are other barriers, too.
  • 23:18 Economic growth for low-income countries
  • 23:21 that is unsustainable high levels of debt,
  • 23:26 which they have contracted over the last couple of years.
  • 23:31 High levels of debt.
  • 23:33 They cannot really finance their programs.
  • 23:39 There are other limitations or barriers.
  • 23:44 Second to economic growth is the lack of infrastructure development
  • 23:52 almost in all sectors of their economies.
  • 23:56 You're talking about areas like energy, transport, social services,
  • 24:04 in the areas of health, in the areas of education
  • 24:10 and in almost all areas of their economies.
  • 24:14 Really, there is a serious lack of infrastructure.
  • 24:19 Also, technology is another area where there's also serious limitation
  • 24:25 for these low income countries
  • 24:29 in order to reach economic growth.
  • 24:32 [Michelle Fleury] I mean, there was a lot there
  • 24:34 that you've just talked about, but I want to pick up on two points.
  • 24:36 In particular, you talked about sustainable debt.
  • 24:39 You also talked about having the fiscal space.
  • 24:42 This is where I want to bring in Mr. Harris,
  • 24:44 because you work at the UN and at the IMF
  • 24:46 developing policies to create sustainable growth.
  • 24:49 What should governments be looking at during this difficult time
  • 24:53 as the global economy recovers from the pandemic?
  • 24:56 [Elliot Harris] Thank you, Michelle.
  • 24:57 I think the first thing the most important thing is
  • 25:00 for governments to ensure that their policies are consistent
  • 25:02 that their policies are consistent
  • 25:03 with the sustainable development agenda.
  • 25:03 with the sustainable development agenda.
  • 25:05 {\an8}It is, on the one hand with regard to the government budget.
  • 25:08 {\an8}In particular, that we want to see a government budget
  • 25:10 {\an8}that is aligned with the SDGs
  • 25:11 and that ensures that the budget
  • 25:13 is not encouraging anything that is unsustainable
  • 25:17 and that it helps to set up the right sorts of incentives
  • 25:20 for private sector activity that is sustainable.
  • 25:23 More generally, I think governments need
  • 25:25 to have an integrated approach to policy-making involving the whole
  • 25:28 of the government so that the overall legislative
  • 25:31 and regulatory framework
  • 25:33 is conducive to sustainable development
  • 25:35 and to growth that is sustainable
  • 25:37 that is rational, evidence-based
  • 25:40 and above all, that is stable and predictable
  • 25:42 and that last element is very important
  • 25:45 for setting up a conducive environment
  • 25:47 for the private sector to invest, to invest in growth for the future.
  • 25:50 Without that private sector investment,
  • 25:52 our governments are not on their own
  • 25:54 going to be able to achieve sustainable growth.
  • 25:56 {\an8}Now, the other part of the question,
  • 25:59 {\an8}the question of whether we can get inclusive growth
  • 26:01 {\an8}requires governments to take positive steps
  • 26:04 {\an8}to go beyond just facilitating overall growth processes.
  • 26:07 {\an8}One is to make clear and to take steps to ensure
  • 26:11 {\an8}that the growth process itself doesn't lead
  • 26:14 {\an8}directly to an acceleration of inequalities
  • 26:17 a widening of inequalities, and sometimes that can be
  • 26:19 as complicated as setting up the right sorts of incentives
  • 26:23 that investments are directed towards
  • 26:25 job intensive types of activities.
  • 26:27 But it also means dividing policies
  • 26:31 that enhance the access to the opportunity
  • 26:33 for people to gain the kinds of skills they will need
  • 26:36 to compete on the job markets of the future
  • 26:38 and in many respects, in this day and age,
  • 26:40 that means digital skills.
  • 26:41 So governments have to make sure
  • 26:43 that the digital infrastructure is created
  • 26:45 not necessarily by the government itself
  • 26:46 but that the right regulations are in place
  • 26:49 and that people have the skills to take advantage of it.
  • 26:51 [Michelle Fleury] I mean, that's the perfect segue to our next guest
  • 26:53 {\an8}doctor Ahmad, because we have seen how this pandemic
  • 26:57 {\an8}has affected women and children
  • 27:00 {\an8}more substantially than other groups
  • 27:02 {\an8}What would you like to see done?
  • 27:04 {\an8}What is your message to policy makers out there?
  • 27:06 [Husna Ahmad, CEO, Global One 2015] Women are facing increased
  • 27:08 {\an8}domestic violence, early marriages, trafficking,
  • 27:11 {\an8}mental health issues, lack of access to antenatal care
  • 27:15 and hospitals for pregnant women is putting lives in danger.
  • 27:19 Schools have been closed
  • 27:21 due to the pandemic, but we don't know when they'll be open.
  • 27:24 Mental hygiene management is a huge issue.
  • 27:27 {\an8}Do we buy-- Do women buy pads or food?
  • 27:31 {\an8}Today, humanity is struggling with [inaudible].
  • 27:35 {\an8}The UN's goal to leave no one behind
  • 27:38 {\an8}can only happen if we ensure everyone has access
  • 27:42 and to the vaccine.
  • 27:44 Will that happen?
  • 27:46 Women are the bedrock of every society.
  • 27:50 If we don't ensure their well-being,
  • 27:52 we will be responsible for a lost generation.
  • 27:56 What needs to be done, Michelle?
  • 27:58 You know as well as I, that women are incredibly resilient
  • 28:03 and women of faith are even more so,
  • 28:06 Two things need to be done.
  • 28:08 The World Bank and the IMF need to become faith sensitive.
  • 28:12 The Bretton Woods institutions have evolved a long way from the days
  • 28:17 of structural adjustments and development partnerships.
  • 28:21 They are much more transparent and accountable,
  • 28:24 but they're still using the Western lens to find solutions.
  • 28:28 And without diversity and inclusion, they will fail.
  • 28:32 Number two, investment, investment, investment.
  • 28:37 Investment in healthcare systems,
  • 28:39 in education, green technology and digital transition,
  • 28:44 investment in social protection, economic inclusion,
  • 28:47 and decent terms
  • 28:49 Thank you.
  • 28:51 {\an8}[Michelle Fleury]I want to pick up there on...
  • 28:55 {\an8}You talked about the role of international organizations
  • 28:59 {\an8}like the World Bank.
  • 29:00 Um, Mr. Harris, if I could bring you in there
  • 29:03 to sort of weigh in what your thoughts are
  • 29:05 {\an8}Do you agree with what Dr. Ahmad was saying?
  • 29:08 {\an8}What more would you like to see international organizations play?
  • 29:11 {\an8}[Elliott Harris] I think, Michelle, that one
  • 29:14 {\an8}of the big challenges that governments face,
  • 29:17 as I said a little bit earlier, is to make sure they get
  • 29:19 {\an8}their policies as right as they can.
  • 29:21 {\an8}And I think that's the first thing
  • 29:22 {\an8}that international institutions can do.
  • 29:24 {\an8}They can help governments to achieve
  • 29:26 that quality, and consistency of policy.
  • 29:28 And that, I think, is the most important bedrock
  • 29:30 for future progress, for sustainable growth
  • 29:32 and for social justice.
  • 29:34 Now, part of that might be helping to build up capacities,
  • 29:37 to formulate and implement the right sorts of policies.
  • 29:39 But it can also involve providing information
  • 29:42 about the overall global context, for example,
  • 29:44 about what other countries have done,
  • 29:46 what's worked in other countries, and why, what's not worked so well
  • 29:49 as a way of building up sort of the evidence base,
  • 29:52 if you will, for informed policy-making.
  • 29:54 {\an8}The second thing.
  • 29:55 {\an8}All governments, around the world, face
  • 29:58 {\an8}global challenges, many of them common to all of us.
  • 30:01 {\an8}Climate change is just the most well-known example.
  • 30:04 {\an8}The international institutions can help deal with that
  • 30:07 {\an8}by providing, for example, the framework for negotiations
  • 30:10 {\an8}around some of these issues, by providing
  • 30:12 {\an8}policy options for consideration by the government and above all,
  • 30:15 {\an8}by providing analysis and the evidence base
  • 30:17 {\an8}to inform the policies.
  • 30:19 Now, some of the institutions are
  • 30:20 financial ones, and they can provide resources to help
  • 30:23 the government move forward on some of these issues.
  • 30:25 But that basic function of providing the framework
  • 30:28 for some of these policies of formulating exercise
  • 30:31 is really critical.
  • 30:33 But there's one last thing that I think
  • 30:35 the international institutions can do.
  • 30:37 They can raise issues that are politically or socially sensitive
  • 30:41 in a given country-context and in doing so, they can help
  • 30:45 to create the space for policy change.
  • 30:47 And these can be things like strengthening
  • 30:49 the institutions that help for greater accountability
  • 30:52 or that help to combat corruption.
  • 30:54 It can be raising the problem of inequalities because, very often
  • 30:57 that speaks against some of the vested interests
  • 31:00 in social structures.
  • 31:02 It can be things like promoting gender equality.
  • 31:04 But in any event.
  • 31:05 Fostering the discussion around these things creates the space
  • 31:09 for civil society and government to work together, where possible
  • 31:12 to start making the kinds of changes that are needed.
  • 31:15 {\an8}[Michelle Fleury] Minister, if I could turn to you
  • 31:16 {\an8}for the last word, we've heard, sort of, what role
  • 31:19 {\an8}international organizations can play and being able to say
  • 31:23 {\an8}things that perhaps governments like yours cannot.
  • 31:26 {\an8}What, specifically, what help would you like to see
  • 31:29 {\an8}from the global community for a country like yours?
  • 31:32 {\an8}[Felix Mlusu] Thank you very much.
  • 31:34 I'm sure for that question.
  • 31:36 {\an8}I think there's a lot that the international community
  • 31:39 {\an8}you know, can do to help the low income countries.
  • 31:44 I think for the start, issues of investment, um...
  • 31:50 The international community or global community can do a lot
  • 31:55 in terms of foreign direct investments,
  • 31:59 partnering local investors,
  • 32:02 {\an8}but also looking at various models of investing in an economy,
  • 32:08 {\an8}whether through public-private partnerships
  • 32:13 or BOT arrangements, or indeed,
  • 32:16 any other, you know, models
  • 32:19 that can be used to invest
  • 32:21 in these low income countries.
  • 32:25 I think one other thing, also, which, you know,
  • 32:29 the international community can do
  • 32:32 is to give easy access
  • 32:35 to concessional loans, and, of course, grants as well.
  • 32:41 These will help to boost up the local fiscal spaces,
  • 32:47 which are lacking, seriously,
  • 32:50 in the low-- you know, low income countries.
  • 32:54 So, concessional loans, grants.
  • 32:58 These would help quite a lot and also adding on to this.
  • 33:03 You know, um, of course
  • 33:05 we cannot forget to ask for date forgiveness.
  • 33:11 This definitely is going to help countries
  • 33:16 to manage their fiscal spaces well
  • 33:21 and that'll also assist them to look at other areas
  • 33:25 of how, even locally, they can generate revenues
  • 33:29 for them to be able to run their local programs.
  • 33:33 So indeed, there's a lot that the international community
  • 33:36 can do, you know, to assist stronger growth
  • 33:41 for the low income countries.
  • 33:43 Thank you.
  • 33:44 {\an8}[Michelle Fleury] Thank you very much.
  • 33:46 {\an8}It seems like
  • 33:47 there is certainly a huge role
  • 33:48 to be played by the international community.
  • 33:50 We're going to have to leave it there, though.
  • 33:52 I would like to thank Minister Mlusu, Elliot Harris.
  • 33:55 And lastly, Husna Ahmad, Thank you so much for your time.
  • 34:00 [Upbeat Music] Hello. My name is John Rosino
  • 34:03 In Athens, Greece, and you are watching
  • 34:05 the World Bank Group-IMF Annual Meeting
  • 34:09 [Michelle Fleury] And to join in the conversation,
  • 34:12 you can use the hashtag #GrowthForAll
  • 34:14 to share your thoughts on this event at any time.
  • 34:17 Up next, let's take a look at how a ride hailing business
  • 34:21 in Sri Lanka was able to pivot during the pandemic
  • 34:24 supporting employees and connecting the community.
  • 34:38 I wake up at 4:00 a.m.
  • 34:42 and then I start to prepare our meals
  • 34:45 It'll be 5:30 a.m. when I'm finished
  • 34:49 I make sure to start my day worshipping the Lord Buddha.
  • 34:52 After I give the meals to my mother,
  • 34:55 we leave the house around 5:15 a.m. to drop my daughter at her school
  • 34:59 After that, I turn the app and start my work with PickMe.
  • 35:06 [Jiffry Zulfer, Founder CEO PickMe]
  • 35:09 When the news struck that there is going to be a curfew tomorrow
  • 35:14 obviously, it was scary because we're not sure what this virus is
  • 35:18 Amidst the pandemic in 2020 and this year,
  • 35:21 PickMe has expanded and the number of female drivers doubled
  • 35:25 has doubled over the months on the platform
  • 35:28 providing them with ample opportunities
  • 35:31 COVID-19 has been undoubtedly a difficult time for all of us
  • 35:36 but I'm delighted PickMe has been able to support our community
  • 35:40 and essentially our country
  • 35:42 from various lines of business.
  • 35:45 [Podimanike Rathnayake, Driver Partner, PickMe]
  • 35:45 We need to take care of ourselves.
  • 35:48 If we stay home doing nothing due to COVID-19
  • 35:51 we can't feed our children.
  • 35:53 When I'm working for PickMe people ask,
  • 35:57 'Aren't you afraid to do a job like this as a woman?'
  • 36:02 I'm not afraid of anything, I like what I am doing.
  • 36:07 [Jiffry Zulfer] For us as a company we were all working from home.
  • 36:12 Everyone was basically running the country's transportation
  • 36:16 in their bedrooms, right?
  • 36:17 And then we spoke to the relevant authorities
  • 36:20 and they gave us the green light
  • 36:22 you know because there is so much demand
  • 36:24 because people wanted these essential goods delivered.
  • 36:28 [L.P. Lasanda Deepthi, Driver Partner PickMe] But the key was we focused on our safety measures.
  • 36:29 We didn't focus on the fear but the safety.
  • 36:33 [Jiffry Zulfer] So we consider them [our drivers] like superheroes.
  • 36:36 In fact we went and changed the icon on the app to a superhero
  • 36:42 [Podimanike Rathnayake] I'm happy that we did something during this unfortunate time.
  • 36:53 [Michelle Fleury] True superheroes, inspiring to see stories
  • 36:56 of success and empowerment during these challenging times.
  • 36:59 But we've already heard from the World Bank Group
  • 37:01 chief economists, youth entrepreneurs
  • 37:04 and leaders of low income countries.
  • 37:06 Now let's turn to the situation in middle income countries,
  • 37:10 and the need for the private sector
  • 37:11 to create and restore jobs.
  • 37:14 First, let's see what central banks can do
  • 37:16 and here's Reza Baqir, Governor of the State Bank of Pakistan.
  • 37:23 [Reza Baqir, Governor, State Bank of Pakistan] I'd like to share my thoughts
  • 37:25 about how central banks can help to spur job creation
  • 37:28 and investment by dividing it in two parts.
  • 37:31 The first is the usual role
  • 37:33 that central banks play,
  • 37:35 and that is price stability, financial stability.
  • 37:38 And we have been taught, and rightly so,
  • 37:41 that these are necessary conditions for growth.
  • 37:45 I would also like to add, though,
  • 37:46 that our experience through COVID has illustrated
  • 37:50 that in times of crisis, central banks have to
  • 37:54 step beyond this normal conventional role.
  • 37:58 And when Pakistan went through COVID,
  • 38:03 what are some of the key lessons
  • 38:04 that the State Bank of Pakistan took away?
  • 38:06 And there are three.
  • 38:07 First, is that central banks in such situations
  • 38:11 have to provide aggressive liquidity support
  • 38:14 to help protect jobs and investment.
  • 38:17 In the case of Pakistan, we provided support
  • 38:20 worth about 5% of GDP in liquidity support,
  • 38:24 and our goal was to try to ensure that liquidity problems
  • 38:28 don't turn into solvency problems.
  • 38:31 It is important to realize one cannot fully and perfectly
  • 38:34 target it, but it is better to err on the side
  • 38:38 of giving liquidity rather than not.
  • 38:41 The second key lesson we took away was that such support
  • 38:46 needs to be targeted and in our case,
  • 38:48 we gave concessionary liquidity support in those cases where
  • 38:52 the borrowing companies committed to not lay off workers
  • 38:56 or they use those proceeds
  • 38:58 directly for new investment, which we could assess
  • 39:02 based upon the letter of credit that the borrower
  • 39:04 had to submit to the banks.
  • 39:06 And the third, and final, and very important point
  • 39:09 is that such support needs to be time-bound.
  • 39:12 In the case of Pakistan, we have reversed nearly all
  • 39:15 of the measures that were introduced during COVID,
  • 39:18 and the reason this is very important
  • 39:20 is that, in normal times, central banks should just focus
  • 39:25 on price stability and financial stability
  • 39:28 as the necessary conditions for growth.
  • 39:31 And though the crisis has shown us that it
  • 39:33 is extremely important to have a wide arsenal of tools
  • 39:38 available to central banks to provide such support in crisis,
  • 39:42 it is equally important for central banks
  • 39:44 in normal times to resist the temptation to use
  • 39:49 this arsenal of tools, and to recognize that it is better
  • 39:53 for the long term growth and stability of countries,
  • 39:56 the central bank balance sheets and not compromise,
  • 39:59 and that they stick to price and financial stability roles.
  • 40:09 [Michelle Fleury] That's the perspective
  • 40:11 of a central bank.
  • 40:12 Earlier, I also spoke with a panel of guests
  • 40:14 whom I asked the same question,
  • 40:16 what is needed in middle income countries to get back on track?
  • 40:22 I am joined by a truly distinguished panel,
  • 40:26 Dr. Ali Allawi. He is both the Deputy Prime Minister
  • 40:30 and Minister of Finance for Iraq.
  • 40:33 Maya Chorengel is co-managing partner
  • 40:36 at the Rise Fund, a 6 billion dollar fund
  • 40:38 that invests in companies driving social and environmental impact,
  • 40:44 and Pia Tayag is the Director of the Office
  • 40:47 of the UN's Secretary-General's Special Advocate
  • 40:49 for Inclusive Finance for Development.
  • 40:52 Thank you all three of you for joining us.
  • 40:54 If I could start, Dr. Allawi, with you
  • 40:58 you are the leader of a middle income country
  • 41:02 that is no stranger to conflict and fragility.
  • 41:05 Talk to us about some of the barriers to economic recovery.
  • 41:09 Obviously, the oil price is recovering and that is helping.
  • 41:12 But what are some of the other roadblocks?
  • 41:14 [Ali Allawi, Deputy Prime Minister, Iraq] I think the main barriers,
  • 41:15 really, apart from having
  • 41:16 the correct mix of strategies and policies, are more to do
  • 41:21 with institutions,
  • 41:23 leadership, continuity of programs
  • 41:27 and policies, and making sure that governance standards
  • 41:31 are up to the needs and requirements of the country
  • 41:34 in the society as a whole, any mix of correct policies.
  • 41:40 And I think this is an absolute essential
  • 41:42 that you have to have the right strategic framework.
  • 41:45 But without what I would call the underlying superstructure,
  • 41:49 the underlying structures of institutions,
  • 41:51 leadership that is committed to change, reform into
  • 41:56 an economic progress and development
  • 41:59 without some degree of ethical,
  • 42:03 or high ethical standards in public administration.
  • 42:08 Without all the full range of governance standards,
  • 42:13 it's very difficult to see how even the best strategies
  • 42:16 can be implemented in a post conflict environment.
  • 42:20 So while we can come up with the funds
  • 42:23 and we don't have a resource cap here,
  • 42:26 the way that we utilize our resources effectively
  • 42:28 and efficiently requires this base of governance
  • 42:33 it requires a base of leadership, it requires a base
  • 42:36 of institutional depth and integrity, and this, I think,
  • 42:40 is becoming absolutely clear
  • 42:43 that development, improving the standard of living of people
  • 42:47 improving the environment for growth,
  • 42:51 and achieving a form of income
  • 42:55 or reducing income disparities and wealth disparities
  • 42:58 requires this underlying base of governance broadly understood.
  • 43:02 So I think I would put my bet on that, that governance
  • 43:07 is absolutely essential for continuity of economic growth
  • 43:10 [Michelle Fleury] Interesting point, that governance
  • 43:12 and leadership, you say, is what is required, of course,
  • 43:16 that can come from governments,
  • 43:18 but it can also come from other sectors.
  • 43:20 Maya Chorengel, your fund seeks to expand the reach
  • 43:22 of commercial capital to help new generations of entrepreneurs.
  • 43:26 I want to ask you, what role can the private sector play
  • 43:30 in this notion of leadership and governance
  • 43:32 that Dr. Allawi was just referring to.
  • 43:34 [Maya Chorengel, Co-managing Partner, The Rise Fundl] Private capital,
  • 43:36 commercial capital is more abundant than philanthropic capital.
  • 43:40 It's more abundant than government aid.
  • 43:42 So where there are places that private capital can play
  • 43:45 it's important for us to step in and play a role.
  • 43:48 That said, one of the limiting factors is that
  • 43:51 we step into environments where governance, infrastructure
  • 43:56 and rule of law and a basic level
  • 44:00 of professionalization is established
  • 44:02 because often private capital has a fiduciary responsibility
  • 44:05 to produce return.
  • 44:07 That said, funds like ours,
  • 44:09 The Rise Fund within TPG are specialists at investing
  • 44:13 in growth stage companies
  • 44:14 and growth stage companies are often great drivers
  • 44:18 of employment and economic growth.
  • 44:21 So where we participate in a lot of emerging market countries,
  • 44:26 Nigeria, Kenya,
  • 44:30 multiple countries in South Asia, in Southeast Asia and in East Asia,
  • 44:35 we've invested behind companies
  • 44:37 that have been tremendous forces for job creation.
  • 44:41 This is also a role that other organizations
  • 44:44 like the IFC have played.
  • 44:46 We, at The Rise Fund, are also specialists at investing
  • 44:49 in companies that are creating some of the infrastructure
  • 44:52 required for job creation and growth.
  • 44:54 So we invest in education companies
  • 44:57 in vocational training companies that are creating technical skills
  • 45:01 and professional layers of leadership
  • 45:04 to lead the next generation of companies.
  • 45:07 So there are various ways in which we play
  • 45:09 and we're very mindful and oriented towards that growth momentum
  • 45:14 that really does create growth within different countries.
  • 45:19 [Michelle Fleury] I think one of the things
  • 45:20 we've all learned during the pandemic is, sort of,
  • 45:23 our increased reliance on technology, and it goes back to
  • 45:26 something that was just referred, to this idea
  • 45:29 of investing in infrastructure.
  • 45:31 Pia Tayag, if I could bring you in here,
  • 45:33 you focus on financial infrastructure, on the digital.
  • 45:39 What role can that play?
  • 45:41 What would you like to say
  • 45:42 to say to governments in terms of the significance of that?
  • 45:44 [Pia Tayag, Director, Office of the UNSGSA] Now, thank you for that question.
  • 45:46 We definitely want to see technology
  • 45:48 enable more efficient delivery of products
  • 45:51 and services to a range of cost effective channels,
  • 45:54 enable better product design
  • 45:56 that truly responds to the needs
  • 45:58 and capacities of customers, and finally enable broader reach,
  • 46:02 especially to segments of the population
  • 46:04 that have been left out.
  • 46:06 We saw it during the pandemic.
  • 46:07 These segments that have been left out,
  • 46:10 limited access to finance or the digital economy
  • 46:13 suffered significantly and disproportionately.
  • 46:16 Yet we also witness the power of digital financial services
  • 46:19 and having in place the rails to deliver them.
  • 46:22 The countries that invested in these digital public goods
  • 46:25 have been better able to efficiently
  • 46:27 roll out social payments, expand beneficiaries lists.
  • 46:31 Consumers were also able to pivot to digital channels
  • 46:34 for payments and even e-commerce.
  • 46:36 So with this in mind,
  • 46:37 I would share, maybe, three messages for policy makers.
  • 46:40 One is invest or continue to invest in digital public goods.
  • 46:44 You said it yourself.
  • 46:45 Many are already seeing this imperative,
  • 46:47 but there are still those who lag behind.
  • 46:50 These digital public goods include digital IDs, connectivity
  • 46:55 enabling regulatory frameworks like consumer protection
  • 46:58 cybersecurity, digital [inaudible], among others.
  • 47:01 So what is important is to emphasize
  • 47:03 that these public goods need to be designed
  • 47:06 for fair and equal access
  • 47:08 and with the needs of consumers front and center.
  • 47:11 For example, our payment channels, taking into consideration
  • 47:14 the gender gap, the smartphone ownership
  • 47:16 or do ID systems allow for offline authentication
  • 47:20 for areas with limited connectivity.
  • 47:22 Which leads me to the second message,
  • 47:24 to ensure that digitization, innovation
  • 47:27 close gaps rather than exacerbate existing divides or inequalities.
  • 47:32 Rural-urban divide, gender gaps in access
  • 47:35 the digital divide, among others
  • 47:37 and ultimately lead to positive outcomes.
  • 47:40 Digital payments' an example,
  • 47:41 digital payments targeted to women with financial literacy
  • 47:45 and a savings mechanism can actually help build buffers
  • 47:48 and better prioritize household spending.
  • 47:50 Finally, encourage innovation and work closely
  • 47:53 across government and the private sector.
  • 47:55 So happy to be in this panel and represent people.
  • 47:58 We do not want innovation for innovation's sake.
  • 48:01 but solutions and products that truly democratize access
  • 48:04 to financial services but more importantly,
  • 48:07 the opportunities that they bring.
  • 48:08 [Michelle Fleury] It's interesting,
  • 48:10 you offered some solutions there as ways to tackle
  • 48:13 one of the things we've seen as a result of the pandemic,
  • 48:15 and that is this growth in the gender gap,
  • 48:18 the inequality as a result of the pandemic.
  • 48:21 Dr. Allawi, how much focus is your government
  • 48:25 putting on that?
  • 48:26 What other fiscal policies are required
  • 48:29 to ensure an inclusive growth that benefits everyone?
  • 48:33 [Ali Allawi Deputy Prime Minister/Iraq]
  • 48:34 The main problem that we face here
  • 48:36 is an inadequate banking system,
  • 48:38 the financial structure that is not able to cope
  • 48:41 with the current demands and future expectations.
  • 48:44 We need to have radical reforms here
  • 48:46 to bring now the state dominated banking system
  • 48:49 into something more an equilibrium
  • 48:52 of the private sector.
  • 48:53 We also need to improve greatly
  • 48:56 the usage of technologies, digitization,
  • 48:59 in order to reach our goals of financial inclusion,
  • 49:04 which are now pretty poor.
  • 49:06 It is critical to focus on the reform of the banking system,
  • 49:12 open it up, create more opportunities
  • 49:15 for new entrance into the system,
  • 49:17 particularly digitally based financial institutions,
  • 49:21 in order to reach the large number of our population
  • 49:24 that is not only on the bank,
  • 49:26 but they don't have access to financial services
  • 49:29 without a properly functional financial system
  • 49:33 that's rooted in up-to-date technologies,
  • 49:35 is very difficult to have a focused fiscal policy
  • 49:39 that involves transfers to targeted sectors.
  • 49:42 So for us in Iraq,
  • 49:45 it is absolutely a priority to reform the banking
  • 49:48 and broadly the financial sector as a whole,
  • 49:50 including insurance, nonbank financial services,
  • 49:53 stock markets.
  • 49:54 And we're pushing in that direction
  • 49:56 by creating the necessary government support
  • 50:00 for this shift.
  • 50:01 We need to do that as a matter of urgency.
  • 50:04 And I think also that most countries in our position
  • 50:09 need to radically reorient their financial system
  • 50:12 towards the technologies that are opening up the market.
  • 50:15 [Michelle Fleury] Interestingly,
  • 50:17 one of the things that, I guess,
  • 50:18 in the middle of a crisis arising from the pandemic
  • 50:22 is that the priority of climate change
  • 50:25 seems to have fallen down the list.
  • 50:27 Maya, if I could bring you in here,
  • 50:29 I was curious how your fund is still focusing
  • 50:34 on green investments to promote a sustainable future.
  • 50:39 Has that slipped down the priority list,
  • 50:41 given the current environment
  • 50:42 and the recovery that we're facing?
  • 50:44 [Maya Chorengel] I'm very lucky within TPG
  • 50:47 to be able to work on both what we call
  • 50:50 the social side and issues of equity, poverty,
  • 50:53 education, health care, financial inclusion.
  • 50:57 But we also have a very strong practice on the climate side.
  • 51:00 And in addition to the $6 billion
  • 51:02 that you mentioned within the [inaudible] complex,
  • 51:05 we've just re recently raised the $7 billion climate fund,
  • 51:09 and this is very much a priority for us
  • 51:11 as we look at the emerging markets
  • 51:13 because we see both great opportunity
  • 51:17 and absolute almost what I'll call 'moral and ethical need'
  • 51:20 to invest in climate solutions.
  • 51:22 And this is everything
  • 51:23 from looking at new technologies
  • 51:26 to working with companies to mitigate and adapt
  • 51:32 to a greener world.
  • 51:34 We have great hope in a number of the entrepreneurs
  • 51:38 in the emerging markets.
  • 51:40 We have a fantastic company, for example,
  • 51:42 in India called Fourth Partner Energy,
  • 51:44 which is the leader in this sector.
  • 51:46 So it's very much a priority for us
  • 51:48 in addition to the social side.
  • 51:50 And I think it is for many investors.
  • 51:52 [Michelle Fleury] Do you think that the private sector
  • 51:55 is placed to address this in a way
  • 51:56 that governments with less fiscal space
  • 51:58 are less able to right now?
  • 52:01 [Maya Chorengel] We believe that there needs to be
  • 52:04 a partnership between the private sector
  • 52:06 and government.
  • 52:07 So we need regulatory frameworks,
  • 52:10 and we need support for green initiatives,
  • 52:13 which many countries in the world,
  • 52:16 including in the emerging markets, are stepping up to do.
  • 52:19 But because they are more capital constrained,
  • 52:22 the important part is for commercial capital
  • 52:25 and private capital to step in
  • 52:26 to actually fund the companies.
  • 52:28 One of the interesting things that we have as a global fund
  • 52:31 is we can also connect the dots between technologies
  • 52:34 that are developing in the west that can move to...
  • 52:37 Or the Global North that can move
  • 52:39 to the Global South, and actually vice versa.
  • 52:41 So there are interesting technologies
  • 52:44 that can be imported and exported
  • 52:47 to accelerate the climate solutions
  • 52:49 that we need to green the planet.
  • 52:52 [Michelle Fleury] One of the things that we keep
  • 52:55 hearing again is how...
  • 52:58 whether we're talking about climate change or the pandemic,
  • 53:01 the burden falls disproportionately
  • 53:02 on different groups.
  • 53:03 Pia, last word to you.
  • 53:07 What would you like to see
  • 53:10 to help the underserved, the vulnerable,
  • 53:13 to make sure that they aren't left behind?
  • 53:15 [Pia Tayag] Definitely.
  • 53:16 What we need to do is really build resilience.
  • 53:19 The pandemic highlighted that,
  • 53:21 it has exacerbated inequalities.
  • 53:24 MSMEs could not stay afloat, and far more firms,
  • 53:27 no access to credit,
  • 53:28 women more likely to lose their jobs.
  • 53:30 And even before the pandemic, there was already
  • 53:33 this lack of resilience.
  • 53:34 In the developing world,
  • 53:35 only half of adults can access a lump sum of funds
  • 53:38 during an emergency.
  • 53:39 What I really like to see is that we go
  • 53:42 beyond payments and account ownership.
  • 53:44 When we talk about building
  • 53:45 an inclusive financial system.
  • 53:47 To see products that really help
  • 53:49 build buffers and cushion against shocks,
  • 53:52 savings and insurance, as well as those
  • 53:54 that enable to cease economic opportunity,
  • 53:56 such as credit and investments.
  • 53:58 We are making progress, but much needs to be done,
  • 54:01 work by both policymakers, providers,
  • 54:04 investors, as we heard.
  • 54:05 Technology is an important catalyst.
  • 54:07 Increased digitization offers opportunities
  • 54:10 to support important segments
  • 54:12 such as micro, small and medium enterprises,
  • 54:15 or the agriculture sector.
  • 54:16 For example, a merchant or a farmer
  • 54:19 can benefit from a range of services.
  • 54:21 Digital payments [inaudible] solutions,
  • 54:23 insurance against climate risks, credit,
  • 54:26 all made possible by digitizing
  • 54:28 the ecosystem in which that merchant
  • 54:30 or farmer operates.
  • 54:31 This will have a positive impact on employment
  • 54:34 for it needed forward and backward linkages,
  • 54:36 and really contribute to broad based growth.
  • 54:39 But underlying all of this,
  • 54:40 I'd like to emphasize that we need
  • 54:42 to make sure we are deliberate
  • 54:44 on working towards financial health.
  • 54:46 For Majesty Queen Máxima of the Netherlands,
  • 54:49 UNSGSA is really supporting
  • 54:51 adopting a financial health perspective
  • 54:54 that broadens attention
  • 54:55 from just accessing usage to positive consumer outcomes
  • 54:59 to make sure consumers and small businesses obtain the value
  • 55:03 from the financial services that they received.
  • 55:04 [Michelle Fleury] It seems like
  • 55:06 governance and leadership
  • 55:07 are sort of the core things
  • 55:09 that all of you have called for to address
  • 55:11 these huge challenges we face.
  • 55:13 Thank you to all three of you for your time today.
  • 55:19 [CJ] Hi, I'm CJ, in Abuja, Nigeria.
  • 55:22 And you're watching
  • 55:23 the World Bank-IMF Annual Meetings.
  • 55:30 [Michelle Fleury] If you have just joined us,
  • 55:32 a warm welcome. I'm Michelle Fleury.
  • 55:34 We're discussing what it will take to spur economic growth
  • 55:37 and an equitable recovery from the pandemic.
  • 55:40 If you want to learn more,
  • 55:41 we have pulled together lots of interesting stories and blogs.
  • 55:44 Just scroll down the World Bank Live page.
  • 55:47 And I'm back with Sri.
  • 55:49 You've been monitoring the conversation
  • 55:50 online and on social media.
  • 55:51 Sri, give us a flavor of what people are saying.
  • 55:54 [Sri Sridhar] Sure, Michelle.
  • 55:55 Today's hashtag was #growth4All,
  • 55:57 and we have comments from all over the world.
  • 56:00 Let me give you a flavor of where we're hearing from folks.
  • 56:02 They are talking to us from India,
  • 56:05 Pakistan, Venezuela, Saudi Arabia,
  • 56:07 the United States, the United Kingdom,
  • 56:10 Rwanda, Uganda and Kenya,
  • 56:12 and a lot of different themes emerging.
  • 56:15 A lot of folks online are saying that
  • 56:17 to achieve economic growth for all,
  • 56:19 the private sector should play an important role,
  • 56:22 that there needs to be support for small businesses,
  • 56:24 as well as strong institutions and good policies.
  • 56:27 And that there also needs to be opportunities
  • 56:30 around AI and renewable energy.
  • 56:32 So a lot of these emerging themes
  • 56:34 coming by these four topics.
  • 56:37 We also do have notable mentions
  • 56:39 because we also have been monitoring the conversation
  • 56:43 on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
  • 56:45 And on LinkedIn,
  • 56:47 we have [inaudible] Resende who's saying
  • 56:49 that the COVID-19 pandemic
  • 56:50 has enrolled enormously affected countries in the Global South,
  • 56:54 and this is why World Bank efforts are essential,
  • 56:56 as millions of people have fallen back to extreme poverty.
  • 57:00 And I think it is a pretty interesting point
  • 57:02 here in terms of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • 57:05 [Michelle Fleury] It goes back to that data point.
  • 57:07 The 97 million additional people living in extreme poverty
  • 57:10 because of COVID-19?
  • 57:12 [Sri Sridhar] Exactly. And on Facebook,
  • 57:14 there's Ifiok Inyang,
  • 57:16 who says that the shock prone zones,
  • 57:17 like emerging markets or economies,
  • 57:20 need strong institutions and good policies,
  • 57:23 and that this is the first and best answer
  • 57:26 to mitigate some of these challenges.
  • 57:29 And finally across Instagram, Jaldip Parghi says
  • 57:31 that countries can create jobs after the pandemic
  • 57:34 through artificial intelligence and robotics,
  • 57:37 along with renewable energy product.
  • 57:39 So this kind of goes back
  • 57:40 to the beginning where I was saying
  • 57:42 there is some conversation around these areas of AI.
  • 57:44 [Michelle Fleury] I know you're going to continue
  • 57:46 to monitor the conversation,
  • 57:48 but I've been waiting for,
  • 57:49 and many people have been waiting for,
  • 57:51 what is the results of our poll? Do we have it?
  • 57:53 [Sri Sridhar] Yes, we do. Today's poll asked
  • 57:55 what is the best way to boost inclusive economic growth?
  • 57:59 And we had four options.
  • 58:01 They were, is it by creating jobs
  • 58:03 and increasing private investments?
  • 58:05 Is it through policy reforms?
  • 58:07 Is it by expanding vaccine distribution, or finally,
  • 58:10 is it by investing in safety nets that focus
  • 58:13 on vulnerable populations?
  • 58:15 Now, before I review the results,
  • 58:17 what would be your vote, Michelle?
  • 58:18 [Michelle Fleury] You're putting me in the spot.
  • 58:20 I'd have to say they're all pretty good options,
  • 58:23 so tough to choose.
  • 58:25 [Sri Sridhar] It is. Yeah, I voted myself for creating jobs
  • 58:27 and increasing private investments,
  • 58:29 but it's it's definitely a tough one.
  • 58:31 But let's see how folks voted.
  • 58:33 [Michelle Fleury] Drum roll.
  • 58:34 [Sri Sridhar] Drum roll?
  • 58:36 And with 55% of the votes,
  • 58:38 creating jobs and increasing private investments wins.
  • 58:43 19.9% of folks saying that it's by investing to policy reforms,
  • 58:48 4.5% by expanding vaccine distribution,
  • 58:51 and 26% say it's by investing in safety nets.
  • 58:55 that focus on vulnerable populations.
  • 58:57 [Michelle Fleury] So it goes back to that comment
  • 58:59 you read about creating jobs.
  • 59:01 [Sri Sridhar] It does.
  • 59:02 [Michelle Fleury] Sri, thank you so much.
  • 59:03 [Sri Sridhar] Thanks, Michelle.
  • 59:05 [Man] Hi, I'm [inaudible],
  • 59:06 from Dhaka, Bangladesh.
  • 59:07 Welcome to World Bank-IMF Annual Meetings.
  • 59:14 [Francisca] Hello, I'm Francisca in Viña del Mar, Chile.
  • 59:17 And you're watching
  • 59:19 the World Bank-IMF Annual Meetings.
  • 59:25 [Michelle Fleury] Now to answer
  • 59:26 some of the questions you've been asking,
  • 59:27 I'm pleased to welcome back
  • 59:28 Carmen Reinhart, chief economist at the World Bank.
  • 59:31 We're also joined by Susan Lund,
  • 59:32 vice president of Economics and Private Sector Development
  • 59:36 at the International Finance Corporation,
  • 59:38 a member of the World Bank Group focused
  • 59:41 on the private sector command.
  • 59:42 If I could start with you,
  • 59:44 we have a question from [inaudible] of Tanzania,
  • 59:47 who wants to know
  • 59:48 one of the most popular questions from our audience.
  • 59:52 What is the biggest economic problem
  • 59:54 facing developing countries?
  • 59:57 [Carmen Reinhart] Lack of growth.
  • 0:00 Growth is essential for poverty reduction.
  • 0:04 It's essential for having, creating revenues
  • 0:07 for governments to have fiscal space and engage.
  • 0:11 So better social safety nets
  • 0:13 and the provision of public goods.
  • 0:16 So I think we had a challenge
  • 0:19 in many emerging markets in developing countries,
  • 0:23 even before the pandemic,
  • 0:24 growth started to slow down around 2015.
  • 0:28 And with growth comes jobs.
  • 0:32 With growth and jobs comes recovery, and it self-feeds.
  • 0:38 So when we think about the challenges ahead
  • 0:42 in terms of development,
  • 0:44 in terms of all the objectives associated with development,
  • 0:48 growth will be key.
  • 0:49 [Michelle Fleury] Susan, if I could bring you,
  • 0:52 this next one focuses on the rural parts
  • 0:54 of the global economy.
  • 0:56 It comes from [inaudible] from Sri Lanka.
  • 1:01 And the question is,
  • 1:02 how can we develop the rural economy sector
  • 1:05 in the COVID-19 pandemic situation?
  • 1:08 [Susan Lund] Well, the rural economy
  • 1:10 is incredibly important.
  • 1:11 70% of the world's people living in extreme poverty
  • 1:15 are in rural areas.
  • 1:16 They're subsistence farmers, and they're facing two problems.
  • 1:20 First is a lack of productivity.
  • 1:22 So for the level of inputs that they give,
  • 1:25 they get only half of the yields
  • 1:26 that you get in other parts of the world.
  • 1:29 And then the second problem is that
  • 1:31 when they do produce crops, there's huge spoilage,
  • 1:34 because they don't have access
  • 1:36 to markets and places to sell the crops.
  • 1:38 In Africa alone,
  • 1:40 it's estimated to be $4 billion a year is lost
  • 1:43 to crop spoilage, and that could be somebody's income.
  • 1:46 So the solution is really around...
  • 1:49 First, providing finance and skills to raise productivity,
  • 1:53 so farmers can learn how to use different types of seeds
  • 1:57 and inputs to raise yields.
  • 1:59 Secondly, giving them access to markets.
  • 2:01 And that includes everything,
  • 2:03 from road infrastructure to rural electrification.
  • 2:07 We now have exciting new opportunities
  • 2:10 with off-grid or mini-grid renewable electricity.
  • 2:13 And then finally, the digital economy has some opportunity.
  • 2:18 There's a startup, a very small business
  • 2:22 called Twiga in Kenya and other African countries
  • 2:26 that connects tens of thousands of farmers
  • 2:28 with vendors in marketplaces.
  • 2:31 This lets farmers know what is the price they can get,
  • 2:34 what's in demand.
  • 2:36 It's enabled many to shift out of subsistence crops
  • 2:39 into things that will sell, thereby creating income.
  • 2:42 So it's extremely important
  • 2:43 that we do address the rural population.
  • 2:46 [Michelle Fleury] Some truly practical tips there.
  • 2:48 But I think our next question, which comes
  • 2:51 from [inaudible] of Liberia,
  • 2:53 which is our most popular,
  • 2:54 goes to the idea of some of the roadblocks.
  • 2:57 How can a low-income country experience growth
  • 3:00 in a time of crisis
  • 3:01 when there is systemic corruption
  • 3:03 and a lack of accountability
  • 3:05 within the governing structure in that economy?
  • 3:07 [Carmen Reinhart] The first part's not to despair.
  • 3:12 That is... Many of these issues, if not all,
  • 3:19 predate the pandemic.
  • 3:21 So...
  • 3:24 Rule of law, establishing better institutions
  • 3:28 is a well-regarded long-time way of fostering better decisions.
  • 3:40 Better allocation of resources,
  • 3:44 and, therefore, what the Pandemic does is
  • 3:52 make it all the more important
  • 3:55 that at a time of scarce resources.
  • 3:57 Those are decisions
  • 4:05 that will impact particularly the most vulnerable populations,
  • 4:12 which at the moment,
  • 4:16 apart from rural,
  • 4:17 include the urban poor, women and children.
  • 4:21 That's where a lot of the new poverty is concentrated.
  • 4:25 Dealing with corruption,
  • 4:26 dealing with governance issues is not a new problem.
  • 4:30 Better institutions, better rule of law is critical.
  • 4:36 And let me say that both of those,
  • 4:38 better rule of law and better institutions,
  • 4:41 are also key to attracting foreign capital,
  • 4:44 which will be very much needed, is very much needed now
  • 4:49 and will continue to be needed
  • 4:52 as we go forward in the recovery phase.
  • 4:55 But let me end on the allocation point that I made.
  • 4:59 I think at a point in which we are stretched
  • 5:02 in terms of growth and recovering,
  • 5:06 those allocation decisions towards the neediest
  • 5:09 are very important and require that rule of law.
  • 5:13 [Michelle Fleury] I like that you started that
  • 5:14 with "let's remain optimistic."
  • 5:17 We have time for one final question, Susan.
  • 5:19 This one is from [inaudible] in India,
  • 5:22 who wants to know the middle class and the self-employed
  • 5:25 are the ones worst or amongst
  • 5:27 those worst hit by the pandemic.
  • 5:29 Vendors, small traders.
  • 5:31 So the private sector
  • 5:32 that the people you're willing to help.
  • 5:33 How can they be assisted
  • 5:35 if the government doesn't give them loans?
  • 5:37 [Susan Lund] Well, it's incredibly important.
  • 5:39 In low-income countries,
  • 5:41 80% of the population is self-employed.
  • 5:43 And in lower middle-income countries, it's two thirds.
  • 5:46 So providing finance skills and access to markets
  • 5:50 are the three parts of the solution there.
  • 5:53 First is access to finance.
  • 5:55 A lot of banks find it very hard.
  • 5:57 It's not profitable to lend to small vendors.
  • 6:01 And so there's a lot of work that we're doing,
  • 6:03 and many institutions around the world are,
  • 6:06 to enable banks to actually direct credit
  • 6:08 towards entrepreneurs,
  • 6:09 especially women-owned businesses.
  • 6:11 There's a whole new initiative called We-Fi:
  • 6:14 Women Entrepreneurs for Financial Inclusiveness,
  • 6:17 that the World Bank Group supports and other institutions.
  • 6:21 In addition, I think I'll come back to digital connectivity.
  • 6:25 One of the things that enables me to remain optimistic, Carmen,
  • 6:30 and actually have hope
  • 6:31 is the fact that digital platforms are really
  • 6:34 transforming even these very traditional markets.
  • 6:38 There are all sorts of different apps like Trade More,
  • 6:43 that connects suppliers to people in the market.
  • 6:47 There are new technologies in agriculture
  • 6:50 like Appeal, in which farmers can coat their crops
  • 6:53 with a vegetable based preservative
  • 6:56 to enable produce to last longer when it's in the market.
  • 7:00 What we need to do is build out the digital infrastructure.
  • 7:03 In addition to the traditional infrastructure.
  • 7:05 Right now, only 28% of the population of Africa
  • 7:09 has access to mobile Internet,
  • 7:11 and the median price they pay
  • 7:14 is 75% higher than what you pay in the EU
  • 7:17 and in some countries
  • 7:18 it's many multiples times higher.
  • 7:21 So completing the undersea cables that are now
  • 7:24 under construction down along
  • 7:25 both the West Coast and East Coast of Africa
  • 7:28 is going to be incredibly important
  • 7:30 to drive down data costs.
  • 7:31 But already, even without that, the stories of startups
  • 7:35 that are just transforming markets
  • 7:38 and helping everyone,
  • 7:39 from the smallest self-employed person
  • 7:42 up to transforming the large companies
  • 7:44 is really inspirational.
  • 7:46 [Michelle Fleury] Well, thanks to both of you.
  • 7:48 So some tips there on how to get to inclusive growth.
  • 7:51 And also thanks to those of you from around the world
  • 7:54 who sent in questions.
  • 7:55 Now to finish off our program on a high note,
  • 7:57 we've asked youth from around the world
  • 8:00 to tell us what gives them hope for the future.
  • 8:02 Here's what they said.
  • 8:06 [Rumaitha Al Busaidi] We have a collective duty
  • 8:08 to reflect and envision
  • 8:09 of a company that is more inclusive.
  • 8:12 [Marko Sofranac] Innovation and creativity are key
  • 8:14 for our community challenges during and after the pandemic.
  • 8:17 [Lyubov Artemenko] Sustainable mobility
  • 8:19 should be at the heart
  • 8:20 of the COVID-19 recovery strategy.
  • 8:23 [Salam Al-Nukta] It is time to realize
  • 8:24 their challenges ignite new business ideas.
  • 8:28 [Aravinth Panch] Future proof skills
  • 8:29 should be interdisciplinary
  • 8:31 so that people can dynamically adapt.
  • 8:33 [Jonathan Chu] What we need
  • 8:34 is more accessibility to education,
  • 8:37 to help young people to upskill themselves.
  • 8:41 [Favour Omokhaiye] To bring on knowledge and skill base,
  • 8:42 which will ensure that we recover
  • 8:44 and even come out more empowered than before the pandemic.
  • 8:47 [Salam Al-Nukta] Young people are not the most threatened.
  • 8:50 In fact, they are the hope to exponential economic growth.
  • 8:56 [Keithlin Caroo] The resilience of Caribbean youth
  • 8:58 has shone through.
  • 8:59 [Marko Sofranac] We are game changers.
  • 9:00 [Rumaitha Al Busaidi] Pulls an existential risk
  • 9:02 to institutions that are looking
  • 9:04 at just simply reverting to business as usual.
  • 9:06 [Keithlin Caroo] When traditional sectors
  • 9:08 had blocked us out, we created a new one.
  • 9:11 [Marko Sofranac] We are the driving force
  • 9:12 recovering the whole country.
  • 9:14 [Keithlin Caroo] Our strength truly lies
  • 9:16 in our human capital.
  • 9:19 [Rumaitha Al Busaidi] We should be
  • 9:20 enabled and empowered enough
  • 9:21 to have a seat on the table to make those decisions.
  • 9:24 [Abhinac Khanal] Creating a path towards a sustainable future
  • 9:26 for the youth and their entire families and communities.
  • 9:34 [Michelle Fleury] The voice of the young.
  • 9:36 This marks the end of the first public event
  • 9:38 in our Annual Meetings.
  • 9:40 But there is so much more to come,
  • 9:42 including tomorrow's event on Ending the Pandemic.
  • 9:45 Then on Thursday the focus turns to climate,
  • 9:48 and trade will be the topic on Friday.
  • 9:50 You can watch all of those,
  • 9:52 as well as catch a replay of this great event
  • 9:55 at World Bank Live.
  • 9:56 And you can share your comments on these Meetings
  • 9:59 using the hashtag #ResilientRecovery.
  • 10:02 We hope you have enjoyed today's event.
  • 10:04 Do keep those comments coming, and goodbye for now.

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ANNUAL MEETINGS 2021

Tune in, ask questions, and share your views with participants from all over the world during the 2021 Annual Meetings of the World Bank Group and the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

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Oct. 11: Growth in a Time of Crisis
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Oct. 15: Trade to the Rescue

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