The managing director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Kristalina Georgieva, expressed confidence in the global economic outlook despite uncertainties related to war and geopolitics. She made these comments during a speech at the World Government Summit in Dubai. Georgieva also announced that the IMF would release a paper the following day showing that phasing out explicit energy subsidies in the Middle East could result in significant savings of $336 billion, equivalent to the entire economies of Iraq and Libya combined.
In addition to the substantial cost savings, Georgieva emphasized that eliminating regressive energy subsidies would also discourage pollution and help improve social spending. However, she noted that despite this, the IMF recently revised its GDP growth forecast for the Middle East and North Africa region downward to 2.9% this year, partly due to short term oil production cuts.
Despite these challenges, Georgieva expressed confidence in the global economy’s resilience, noting that it has shown remarkable strength in recent years. She also warned of the wide-ranging consequences of ongoing conflicts such as those in Gaza and their potential to further exacerbate economic challenges faced by economies still recovering from previous shocks.