Finance heads of the world’s top 20 economies pledge to monitor the impact of the coronavirus epidemic on global growth and act if required, as they stated loose monetary policy and easing trade spats would prompt a lift in 2020 and 2021.
The Group of 20 (G20) finance ministers and central bank chiefs faced a sober presentation by the International Monetary Fund (IMF), which predicted the outbreak would shave 0.1 share points off global progress.
U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin stated central bankers would look at choices to respond to the outbreak if required. At the same time, Bank of Japan governor Haruhiko Kuroda said he was able to ease policy if necessary.
China was represented at the G20 meeting by its ambassador to Saudi Arabia, as senior delegates stayed away due to the rising crisis over the virus.
Chinese state television quoted China’s President Xi Jinping as saying on Sunday Beijing would prompt policy adjustments to help soften the blow on the economy from the pandemic.
Saudi Finance Minister Mohammed al-Jadaan told a news conference at the meeting: “We’ve discussed the spread of coronavirus in China and other nations and all the G20 nations agreed collectively on being ready to interfere with necessary policies.”
The epidemic, which stemmed in China, has since spread to almost 30 nations.
South Korea raised its infectious disease alert to its highest level Sunday, but the EU noticed “no need to panic” over an epidemic in Italy.