Thursday, April 20, 2017
Worries over Trump policies cloud start of IMF, World Bank meetings
World finance leaders are gathering on U.S. President Donald Trump’s home turf on Thursday to try to nudge his still-evolving policies away from protectionism and show broad support for open trade and global integration.
The International Monetary Fund and World Bank spring meetings bring the two multilateral institutions’ 189 members face-to-face with Trump’s “America First” agenda for the first time, just two blocks from the White House.
“These meetings will all be about Trump and the implications of his policies for the international agenda,” said Domenico Lombardi, a former IMF board official who is now with the Centre for International Governance Innovation, a Canadian think-tank.
He added that IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde is aiming to “socialize” the new administration to the IMF’s agenda and influence its policy choices.
The IMF in particular has sounded warnings against Trump’s plans to shrink U.S. trade deficits with potential measures to restrict imports, arguing in its latest economic forecasts that protectionist policies would crimp global growth that is starting to gain traction.