The management of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank Group (WBG) and their executive boards have agreed to implement a joint plan to adapt the 2020 IMF-WBG Spring Meetings to a virtual format, IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva and WBG President David Malpass said in a joint statement on Tuesday.
“Our goal is to serve our membership effectively while ensuring the health and safety of Spring Meetings participants and staff,” they said, adding that they have been deeply concerned by the evolving situation of the Coronavirus and the human tragedy it has caused.
Both bodies remain fully committed to maintaining a productive dialogue with their stakeholders and will leverage their IT-related and virtual connection capabilities to the fullest to hold their essential policy consultations with the membership.
“We will also continue to share IMF and WB analyses. With this adapted format, we are confident that our member countries will be able to effectively engage in pressing global economic issues at these Spring Meetings, “they mentioned.
The IMF asserted through its website that the meetings are not being canceled, explaining that delegates will not attend the Meetings in person, with the possible exception of a small number of delegates participating in official meetings.
IMF and WBG will conduct their official consultations and related flagship press briefings remotely.
Similar extraordinary steps were taken in the wake of the 11 September 2001 terrorist attacks in New York and Washington DC by postponing and then shifting policy meetings to another location.