IMF acknowledges climate change limitations

The head of the International Monetary Fund has acknowledged its limitations to act on climate change, saying other institutions can lead on climate finance.


Kristalina Georgieva said the multilateral lender would “only do what we are good at”.


But she defended its focus so far on climate change after a top US official said the IMF “should not be experts on climate issues”.


The US is one of its biggest funders and US officials have been pushing to refine the IMF’s mission.


IMF director Kristalina Georgieva said other institutions, such as the World Bank, can lead on “sectoral issues” including climate finance.


“We do what we are good at: sound policies for prosperity, growth and employment,” she said.


She did however add that climate shocks cannot be excluded from its policy decisions, and that conversations about policies to promote financial stability must continue to include climate issues.


Founded after World War Two to promote international economic stability, the IMF is known for low-cost loans to governments in distress.


It is seen as having a key role to play at a time when forecasters expect global growth to remain lower than recent historic norms.


The financial institution wields roughly $1tn in lending power, receiving more than 15% of its budget from the US.


Some in the US have accused the fund of getting distracted from its core mission by issues such as climate change.

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