Finance leaders defend trade, worry about those left behind

According to him, "Too often, we forget about crises as soon as they abate - leading to a cycle of panic and neglect".

Kim said the World Bank was now engaged in a major study with China on the drivers of China's future economic growth and deepening partnership with the Beijing-based Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB). "Last week at the London School of Economics, I outlined how we're working to change our approach", Kim said at a news conference here.

Work by the lender's International Finance Corp arm in Zambia a year ago to set up auctions for private firms to build solar generating plants provides a model for his proposed approach. There are still many downside risks, however, and countries that have the fiscal space need to continue with structural reforms. If the conditions aren't right, we will work with our partners to de-risk that project or, if needed, de-risk entire countries or sectors. "This is vital to accelerating the sustainable and inclusive economic growth needed to end extreme poverty by 2030", he said. "We estimate that two-thirds of all jobs that now exist in developing countries will be wiped out by automation", he said. Here's the good news: There's never been a better time to find those win-win solutions.

We're already working with the affected countries and partners to respond to the starvation - and we will use every tool we have, financial and advisory, to prevent starvation in the future, Kim said.

Kim said one of the things that the Bank found was that foreign direct investment often had much higher impact, much stronger impact on improving institutions and government than aid to low income and under-developed countries. There are trillions of dollars sitting on the sidelines, earning little interest, and investors are looking for better returns. That capital should be mobilized to help us meet the exploding aspirations of people all over the world. "Millions of lives are at risk and more will die if we do not act quickly and decisively", Kim said.

International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde believes the IMF can work successfully with the Trump administration to improve the global trading system, but adds that open trade must be preserved as a growth engine.

On Saturday, Kim said he will convene a meeting co chaired with the United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to ensure a coordinated, effective and well-resourced response.

Lagarde added that stronger co-operations between countries would help clamp down on tax avoidance and encourage trade opportunities.

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