After 50 years, the IMF and World Bank gather in Morocco for their first annual meetings in 2023 in Marrakech, Morocco, Africa. IMF World Bank Annual Meetings 2023 is held to reform to better help poor nations blighted by debt and climate change.
- The International Monetary Fund and World Bank annually gather finance ministers and central bank governors outside their Washington headquarters every three years.
- The southern Moroccan city of Marrakech was supposed to host it in 2021, but the gathering was postponed twice because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
- A powerful earthquake that killed nearly 3,000 people in the region south of Marrakesh last month threatened to derail the event again, but the government decided it could go ahead.
- The IMF and World Bank meeting was last held in Africa in 1973 when Kenya hosted the event, and some nations were still under colonial rule.
- Half a century later, the continent faces various challenges ranging from conflict to a series of military coups to unrelenting poverty to natural disasters.
The issue to be Discussed at IMF World Bank Annual Meetings 2023
- Africa as a third seat: In a symbolic move, the IMF and World Bank are poised to give Africa a third seat on their executive boards, which Georgieva said would give the continent a "stronger voice". But the thorniest issues revolve around money.
- Emerging Powers: The main contributors do not favour a capital increase as it would force them to put up more funds and give greater influence to emerging powers such as China and India.
- The World Bank, however, is expected to confirm plans to boost lending by $50 billion over the next decade through balance sheet changes.
- Emerging Nations: World Bank President Ajay Banga wants to go even further and raise capacity by $100 billion or as much as $125 billion through contributions from advanced economies. But the issue is unlikely to be finalized in Marrakech.
- Quota System: The global lenders may use the meetings to reform their quota systems. Based on a country's economic performance, the quotas determine how much funding they should provide to the IMF, their voting power and the maximum amount of loans they can obtain.
- Climate Change: Activists plan to march in Marrakech to urge Washington-based institutions to take bold steps against climate change and debt. NGOs say the austerity-driven solutions offered by the IMF and World Bank are only widening the gap between the rich and the poor in the developing world.
- Indian Finance Minister Niramala Sitharaman participated in the IMF World Bank Annual Meetings 2023.
About International Monetary Fund (IMF)
- The International Monetary Fund (IMF) was established in 1944 after the Great Depression of the 1930s.
- The IMF was founded by 44 member countries that sought to build a framework for economic cooperation.
- The IMF is governed by and accountable to 190 countries that comprise its nearly global membership.
- The IMF can lend about $1 trillion to its member countries.
- IMF Managing Director is Kristalina Georgieva.
- Gita Gopinath, an Indian, is the First Deputy Managing Director of the IMF.
- The IMF issues an international reserve asset, Special Drawing Rights, or SDRs, that can supplement member countries' official reserves.
- IMF funds come from three sources:
- member quotas,
- credit arrangements, and
- bilateral borrowing agreements.
- IMF headquarters is located at 1900 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20431, United States
Note: The 1944 Bretton Woods Conference created the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (World Bank).
About World Bank
- The World Bank functions like a cooperative consisting of 189 member countries. These member countries, also known as shareholders, are represented by a Board of Governors.
- The Board of Governors comprises the ultimate policymakers at the World Bank, generally consisting of the ministers of finance or development from the member countries.
- The Board of Governors meets annually at the Annual Meetings of the Boards of Governors of the World Bank Group and the International Monetary Fund.
The World Bank Group has five international organizations,
- International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD)
- International Development Association (IDA)
- International Finance Corporation (IFC)
- Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA)
- International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID)
- Its headquarters is at 1818 H Street, NW, Washington, D.C., U.S.
- The current President of the World Bank is Ajay Banga, an Indian-American.
Note: India is not a member of ICSID (International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes).