ShareThis Page
World

World Bank president says trade tensions could worsen poverty

| Wednesday, Oct. 10, 2018, 11:09 p.m.
Managing Director of International Monetary Fund Christine Lagarde and World Bank President Jim Yong Kim attend a trade conference in Bali, Indonesia, on Wednesday, Oct. 10, 2018.
Managing Director of International Monetary Fund Christine Lagarde and World Bank President Jim Yong Kim attend a trade conference in Bali, Indonesia, on Wednesday, Oct. 10, 2018.

NUSA DUA, Indonesia — Escalating trade tensions between the United States and China could undo global progress in helping end extreme poverty, World Bank President Jim Yong Kim said Thursday at the outset of bank’s annual meeting with the International Monetary Fund and other financial institutions.

Threats to growth and the trade that helps drive it are overshadowing the gathering of finance officials, central bankers and other leaders on the Indonesian island of Bali, a tropical tourist destination that reflects Indonesia’s own rapid development over the past three decades.

Kim joined IMF chief Christine Lagarde and others in warning of the risks to world growth and economic development from threats to world trade after the United States imposed tariffs on tens of millions of dollars of Chinese exports and Beijing responded with similar retaliatory taxes on imports of U.S. goods.

“We’re very concerned about trade tensions,” Kim said. “Trade is very critical because that is what has lifted people out of extreme poverty.

“I am a globalist. That is my job. That is our only chance of ending extreme poverty. We need more trade not less trade,” he said at a news conference.

He said the World Bank was working with countries to prepare for a worsening situation because if tariffs were imposed to the most extreme limits there would be a “clear slowdown and the impact on the developing countries would be greater.”

Kim said the bank had offered help to Indonesia for its recent earthquake and tsunami and other disasters. The people gathered in Bali for the meetings got a taste of such threats themselves with a predawn earthquake that shook hotels in the resort area cordoned off for the event. Indonesian officials said the worst damage occurred on Java island. There was no evidence of severe damage in the area near the finance meetings.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.

click me