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Developing countries 'facing crisis fallout'

Manama, April 27, 2009

Finance Minister Shaikh Ahmed bin Mohammed Al Khalifa said that the developing countries will be most affected by the fallout of the global economic downturn given their limited financial strength.

He said the developed countries will overcome the crisis and witness an economic revival in a short period.

Addressing the 79th session of the World Bank Development Committee on behalf of Bahrain, Qatar, Syria, the UAE and Yemen, Shaikh Ahmed focused on the financial crisis being witnessed worldwide because of globalisation.

He pointed out that many workers lost heir jobs, houses or savings due to the meltdown, warning that the crisis has severely hit the poor countries where citizens were struggling with the soaring prices.

'Due to the crisis, millions of people will join those living below poverty line,' the minister said.

The globalisation wave which has made significant gains is now pulling us downwards, the fact that requires a global action to get us out of the present situation, the minister said, stressing on the key role the World Bank and the IMF could play to boost recovery.

Though the minister welcomed the initiatives aimed at resuscitating international trade, he warned that the outcome would be achieved at a very slow pace, calling for reconsideration of the multilateral trade negotiations.

Meanwhile, IMF and World Bank said that the global economic crisis is turning into 'a human and development calamity,' with developing countries being hit increasingly hard.

'The global economy has deteriorated dramatically ... Developing countries face especially serious consequences as the financial and economic crisis turns into a human and development calamity,' they said in a statement.

The crisis 'has already driven more than 50 million people into extreme poverty ... We must alleviate its impact on developing countries and facilitate their contribution to global recovery.'

How to help the developing world cope with the worst global slump since the 1930s Great Depression was top of the agenda of the spring meeting of the joint International Monetary Fund and World Bank development committee.

The statement said their member states needed to meet pledges, including commitments to increase resources available for lending made at the London G20 summit, in order the tackle the problem.

'Given the possibility of a slow recovery, we considered the need to deploy additional resources,' it said, with the World Bank to examine this issue further.

A World Bank/IMF report warned that the crisis means up to 90 million more people will remain trapped in extreme poverty this year while the chronically hungry could top one billion.-TradeArabia News Service




Tags: economy | Crisis | Developing Countries |

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