Alwaleed Philanthropies donating $1m for Sri Lanka flood relief

A boy carries water bottles near a flood affected area near Colombo. (AP)
Updated 24 May 2016
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Alwaleed Philanthropies donating $1m for Sri Lanka flood relief

RIYADH: Alwaleed Philanthropies (AP), chaired by Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, is donating $1 million to provide support to those affected by the recent floods and landslides that have caused devastation in Sri Lanka.
The announcement comes as delegates from 175 countries gather in Istanbul today for the opening of the first ever World Humanitarian Summit.
At the summit, global leaders are discussing how to effectively respond to major humanitarian challenges like the one in Sri Lanka, and how to be better prepared to meet challenges of the future.
The disaster in Sri Lanka has claimed the lives of dozens of people, with hundreds of thousands displaced from their homes.
Though Sri Lanka frequently experiences severe monsoons and flooding, this year’s devastation was unusually fierce for so early in the rainy season.
 AP’s funds will be used to provide vital relief to victims of the disaster, through the foundation’s partnerships with the UN World Food Programme, Habitat for Humanity and International Medical Corps.
The UN World Food Programme is the world’s largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide. In emergencies, it gets food to where it is needed, saving the lives of victims of war, civil conflict and natural disasters. After the cause of an emergency has passed, it uses food to help communities rebuild their lives.
Habitat for Humanity works with the poorest and the most vulnerable to help provide them with a decent place to call home and the opportunity for a life built on hope and potential, self-reliance and dignity.
International Medical Corps works to relieve the suffering of those impacted by war, natural disaster and disease by delivering vital health care services that focus on training, helping devastated populations return to self-reliance.
 “This crisis reinforces just how important this week’s discussions are at the World Humanitarian Summit. One of the core aims of the Summit is to enable countries and communities to better prepare for and respond to crises just like this one in Sri Lanka,” said Nauf Al-Rawaf, executive manager of Global Initiatives at AP.
For over 35 years, Alwaleed Philanthropies has supported and initiated projects in over 120 countries regardless of gender, race, or religion.
Alwaleed Philanthropies collaborates with a range of philanthropic, governmental and educational organizations to combat poverty, empower women and youth, develop communities, provide disaster relief and create cultural understanding through education.


IMF warns of rising risks to global growth amid trade tensions

Updated 16 July 2018
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IMF warns of rising risks to global growth amid trade tensions

  • Worsening trade confrontations pose serious risks to the outlook, the IMF said
  • The fund warns growth could be cut by a half point by 2020 if tariff threats are carried out

WASHINGTON: The global economy is still expected to grow at a solid pace this year, but worsening trade confrontations pose serious risks to the outlook, the International Monetary Fund said Monday.
The IMF’s updated World Economic Outlook (WEO) forecast global growth of 3.9 percent this year and next, despite sharp downgrades to estimates for Germany, France and Japan.
The US economy is still seen growing by 2.9 percent this year, and the estimate for China remains 6.6 percent, with little impact expected near term from the tariffs on tens of billions of dollars in exports the countries have imposed on each other so far.
“But the risk that current trade tensions escalate further — with adverse effects on confidence, asset prices, and investment — is the greatest near-term threat to global growth,” IMF Chief Economist Maurice Obstfeld said.
The fund warns growth could be cut by a half point by 2020 if tariff threats are carried out.
Although the global recovery is in its second year, growth has “plateaued” and become less balanced, and “the risk of worse outcomes has increased,” Obstfeld said in a statement.
The report comes as US President Donald Trump has imposed steep tariffs duties on $34 billion in imports from China, with another $200 billion coming as soon as September, on top of duties on steel and aluminum from around the world including key allies.
China has matched US tariffs dollar for dollar and threatened to take other steps to retaliate, while US exports face retaliatory taxes from Canada, Mexico and the European Union.
“An escalation of trade tensions could undermine business and financial market sentiment, denting investment and trade,” the IMF report said.
In addition, “higher trade barriers would make tradable goods less affordable, disrupt global supply chains, and slow the spread of new technologies, thus lowering productivity.”
The IMF said growth prospects are below average in many countries and urged governments to take steps to ensure economic growth will continue.
The fund said global cooperation and a “rule-based trade system has a vital role to play in preserving the global expansion.”
However, without steps to “ensure the benefits are shared by all, disenchantment with existing economic arrangements could well fuel further support for growth-detracting inward-looking policies.”
The sweeping US tax cuts approved in December will help the economy “strengthen temporarily,” but growth is expected to moderate to 2.7 percent for 2019.
And while the fiscal stimulus will boost US demand, is also will increase inflationary pressures, the WEO warned.
China’s growth also is seen slowing in 2019 to 6.4 percent.
After upgrading growth projections for the euro area in the April WEO, the IMF revised them down by two-tenths in 2018 to 2.2 percent, due to “negative surprises to activity in early 2018,” and another tenth in 2019 to 1.9 percent.
The estimates for Germany, France and Italy were cut by 0.3 points each, with Germany seen expanding by 2.2 percent this year and 2.1 percent in 2019. France’s GDP is expected to grow 1.8 percent and 1.7 percent.
Meanwhile, Britain is now forecast to grow 1.4 percent this year, 0.2 points less than the April estimate, and 1.5 percent in 2019.
Japan’s GDP is seen slowing to 1.0 percent this year, two-tenths less than previously forecast, “following a contraction in the first quarter, owing to weak private consumption and investment.” It should grow 0.9 percent the following year.
India remains a key drivers of global growth, but the GDP outlook was cut one-tenth for this year and three-tenths for next year to 7.3 percent and 7.5 percent, respectively.
Brazil saw an even sharper 0.5-point downward revisions from the April forecast, to 1.8 percent this year.