IMF’s Christine Lagarde and South African president-elect Cyril Ramaphosa have more in common than you think

(DAVOS) It appears International Monetary Fund head Christine Lagarde and South African president elect Cyril Ramaphosa have more in common than merely both being lawyers turned politicians – they both want to crack down on corruption and tax evasion.

On the first day of the World Economic Forum gathering in driving snow of the ski-resort in Switzerland Lagarde also showed she shared Ramaphosa’s penchant for the homespun turn of phrase as she launched a brighter than expected IMF Global Report on a worse than expected grey-sky day of heavy snow in Davos. It predicts global growth of 3.9% this year and next; growth of 0.2% higher than it expected thanks to tax cuts in the United States and improved performance from emerging economies like Russia and Brazil.

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“When the sun is shining it is time to fix the roof,” Lagarde told journalists at the first press briefing of Davos 2018 on Monday.

“Or when the snow stops it is time to clear the roads. That is how it seems to work here in Davos.”

Lagarde said the IMF was encouraged by the growth forecasts it was still worried about low interest rates hitting the viability of the financial sector and the increase in debt around the world.

“We will also be tackling corruption and tax evasion to come up with long lasting solutions,” Lagarde said.

Lagarde said economies should guard against complacency and provide training for women, the young and older workers whose jobs have been taken over by technology.

 

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