MIL OSI Translation. Government of the Republic of France statements from French to English –
Source: IMF in French
October 8, 2020
Text prepared for the intervention
Thank you very much for being here today. It is a real honor to welcome so many distinguished guests from the Sahel region and elsewhere, including two presidents, several ministers of finance and representatives of the World Bank, the United Nations, of the European Union and of course the IMF.
The Sahel is a region that is very close to my heart.
I traveled very often to the countries of the Sahel when I was responsible for humanitarian aid at the European Commission. I have been to refugee camps, to units for the care of malnourished children and to families who have traveled long distances to escape violence.
I will always remember the dignity and strength of those who have gone through such difficult trials. I especially remember hearing the great Malian singer Inna Modja sing with passion the difficulty of finding water, or meeting refugees who insisted on giving me a beautiful shawl when they had next to nothing.
As I have noticed many times throughout my life, macroeconomic decisions produce lasting microeconomic effects. And in many ways, the issues I have seen firsthand in the Sahel stem from two macroeconomic issues: on the one hand, the continuing security crisis; and on the other hand, the difficulty of establishing solid economic bases in the region which would help the populations to improve their living conditions and to create and increase the capacity for adaptation.
We have also seen that over the past four years, countries in the region have dramatically increased their security spending, which risks crowding out other essential spending, including those needed to save lives and ensure security. livelihoods in the face of the pandemic.
Indeed, the security crisis and the economic crisis in the Sahel are mutually reinforcing, creating an endless vicious circle. To stop it, a sense of urgency will need to be present and institutions, including the IMF, will need to continue to mobilize and cooperate. Establishing a strategic calendar of technical and high-level meetings could help maintain momentum.
Today’s meeting is an important milestone and I look forward to having an interesting and constructive discussion with you.
IMF Communications Department
PHONE: +1 202 623-7100 EMAIL: MEDIA@IMF.org
EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and / or sentence structure not be perfect.