At the open of the 2018 Annual Meetings of the World Bank Group and International Monetary Fund, President Joko Widodo of the host nation Indonesia compared relations among major economies to the television series Game of Thrones.
“Thanks to the assistance of leading economies, the developing economies today can contribute hugely to the world economy. But, lately, it feels like the relations among the major economies is becoming more and more like The Game of Thrones.”
Widodo was referring to the violent show about powerful families vying for the throne.
After Widodo’s speech to the Plenary of the Annual Meetings, IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde urged policymakers to step away from conflict and fix the global trading system, not break it.
“Even though trade cooperation has driven an unprecedented period of growth and prosperity over the last 70-plus years, today it faces a backlash—partly because too many people have been left out. We estimate that escalation of current trade tensions could reduce global GDP by almost one percent over the next two years. Clearly, we need to de-escalate these disputes. But also, clearly, we need to reform the global trade system to make it even better, fairer, and stronger,” said Lagarde.
The plenary session opened with a moment of silence for Indonesians lost in the recent earthquakes and tsunami to strike the host nation.
You can watch the video of the full event at IMF.org