"A high degree of uncertainty surrounds our projections".
Malhar Nabar, head of the World Economic Studies division in the International Monetary Fund said the second wave of the pandemic poses severe downside risk to the growth outlook.
The multilateral institution upwardly revised the growth outlook for South Africa from 2.8% to 3.1%.
Data published by Statistics South Africa in March showed that South Africa's economy contracted by 7% previous year.
"For the Emerging and Developing Asia regional group, projections for 2021 have been revised up by 0.6 percentage point, reflecting a stronger recovery than initially expected after lockdowns were eased in some large countries (for example, India)", the WEO said. The SARB started keeping records in 1912.
The IMF expects the world economy to grow by 6 per cent in 2021, up from its 5.5 per cent forecast in January, a stronger economic recovery in 2021 as Covid-19 vaccine rollouts get underway. The organization had previously predicted a 4.1% growth for the Israeli economy this year.
After an estimated contraction of 3.3% in 2020 (calendar year), the global economy is expected to grow 6% this year and 4.4% next year, though there are significant divergences within and between countries. "Thanks to unprecedented policy response, the Covid-19 recession is likely to leave smaller scars than the 2008 global financial crisis", the report read.
In the IMF's estimation, the global rebound will gradually lose momentum and return to pre-COVID levels of just above 3 per cent growth.
Global growth is expected to moderate to 3.3 per cent over the medium term, reflecting projected damage to supply potential and forces that predate the pandemic, including aging-related slower labour force growth in advanced economies and some emerging market economies.
The sub-Saharan Africa region - which includes Ghana, Kenya, South Africa and Nigeria - continues to feel the pandemic's impacts.
In 2020, the global economy contracted by 3.3 per cent. "For many frontier market economies, market access remains impaired", said the report.
Still, the fund is recommending that countries with the ability to spend continue to support policy measures like unemployment insurance and stimulus checks through the economic reopening.
There have also been "learning losses", particularly in low-income and developing countries which had to introduce school closures.
"Higher debt service costs are also expected to constrain their ability to address social needs, including rising poverty and growing inequality, or to correct the setback in human capital accumulation during the crisis", it said.
The IMF suggested that policymakers prioritise prudent policies in the face of uncertainty. With multi-speed recoveries, a tailored approach is necessary, with policies well-calibrated to the stage of the pandemic, the strength of the economic recovery, and the structural characteristics of individual countries, she said.
The IMF also called for strong worldwide cooperation - not only to narrow the gap in living standards of low-income developing countries but also to ensure the universal distribution of vaccines, at affordable prices. Faster progress with vaccinations can uplift the forecast, while a more prolonged pandemic with virus variants that evade vaccines can lead to a sharp downgrade.
"We do want to make sure that the SDR allocation goes to support relief and economic support in the lowest-income countries", Yellen said Monday.
Moves to bolster the IMF's emergency reserves could provide the US$44 billion needed to vaccinate 70% of the population in lower-and middle-income countries by the end of 2022, at no added cost to rich countries, a new Rockefeller Foundation report finds.