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  • Global Economic Prospects, January 2022 World Bank 2022.01.13

    After rebounding to an estimated 5.5 percent in 2021, global growth is expected to decelerate markedly to 4.1 percent in 2022, reflecting continued COVID-19 flare-ups, diminished fiscal support, and lingering supply bottlenecks. The near-term outlook for global growth is somewhat weaker, and for global inflation notably higher, than previously envisioned, owing to pandemic resurgence, higher food and energy prices, and more pernicious supply disruptions. Global growth is projected to soften further to 3.2 percent in 2023, as pent-up demand wanes and supportive macroeconomic policies continue to be unwound. Although output and investment in advanced economies are projected to return to pre-pandemic trends next year, in emerging market and developing economies (EMDEs)―particularly in small states and fragile and conflict-afflicted countries― they will remain markedly below, owing to lower vaccination rates, tighter fiscal and monetary policies, and more persistent scarring from the pandemic. Various downside risks cloud the outlook, including simultaneous Omicron-driven economic disruptions, further supply bottlenecks, a de-anchoring of inflation expectations, financial stress, climate-related disasters, and a weakening of long-term growth drivers. As EMDEs have limited policy space to provide additional support if needed, these downside risks heighten the possibility of a hard landing. This underscores the importance of strengthening global cooperation to foster rapid and equitable vaccine distribution, calibrate health and economic policies, enhance debt sustainability in the poorest countries, and tackle the mounting costs of climate change. EMDE policy makers also face the challenges of heightened inflationary pressures, spillovers from prospective advanced-economy monetary tightening, and constrained fiscal space. Despite budgetary consolidation, debt levels―which are already at record highs in many EMDEs―are likely to rise further owing to sustained revenue weakness. Over the longer term, EMDEs will need to buttress growth by pursuing decisive policy actions, including reforms that mitigate vulnerabilities to commodity shocks, reduce income and gender inequality, and enhance preparedness for health- and climate-related crises.

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