Posted on October 10, 2012 by iMFdirect
By Christine Lagarde
Japan was struck, in the mid-afternoon of Friday, March 11, 2011, by the country’s largest ever recorded earthquake. Within an hour, parts of Japan’s northeast coast were hit by a wall of water that swept away cars, boats, trains, buildings, roads—and thousands of lives.
It was with humility and respect, then, that I visited parts of the affected area more than 18 months on, in a special event this week in and around Sendai—the Japanese city most affected by the disaster, a couple of hours by train north of Tokyo. This “Sendai Dialogue,” cohosted by the Government of Japan and the World Bank, was part of the overall IMF/World Bank Annual Meetings being held in Tokyo this week.
Disaster turned to success
I went to two areas around Sendai—the first was the Arahama Elementary School, site of a successful evacuation during the disaster. The school is still in its wrecked state—just as it was straight after the tsunami struck. Debris is strewn all over the grounds–a mangled mass of vehicles resembling more a scrap yard than a school. The corridors and classrooms inside are also in ruins.
Filed under: Annual Meetings, Multilateral Cooperation, International Monetary Fund, IMF, Politics | Tagged: Arahama School, Christine Lagarde, disaster, disaster management, earthquake, Haiti, Japan, Koriki Jojima, President Jim Yong Kim, recovery, Seaside Park Adventure Field, Sendai, Sendai Dialogue, technical assistance, Tohuko, tsunami, World Bank | Leave a comment »
Posted on August 1, 2012 by iMFdirect
By Jerry Schiff
(Version in 日本語)
As a Japanese proverb has it: “Knocked down seven times, get up eight.”
In a display of its resilience, Japan is getting up once again after the devastating earthquake and tsunami of a year ago. But the world’s third largest economy still faces multiple challenges, and in our latest assessment of the country’s economy, the Japanese mission team at the International Monetary Fund has proposed a range of mutually reinforcing policies to strengthen confidence, raise growth and help restore Japan’s economic vitality.
A year and four months ago, Japan was reeling from the Great East Japan earthquake and accompanying devastation. As well as the tragic loss of life, the economy was badly shaken. Supply chain disruptions brought production in parts of Japan to a virtual halt. Yet, since then, the country has shown its resilience, with reconstruction contributing to strong first quarter growth of 4¾ percent.
But despite this hopeful sign, all is not well.
Filed under: Advanced Economies, Asia, Civil Society, Economic Crisis, Economic outlook, Economic research, Financial Crisis, Fiscal policy, growth, IMF, Politics | Tagged: adjustment, banks, debt, earthquake, euro, FSAP, Great East Japan earthquake, Japan, jobs, Labor, supply chain, tsunami, women | 2 Comments »
Posted on January 22, 2010 by iMFdirect
By Dominique Strauss-Kahn,
Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund
The saddening and horrific pictures from Haiti after its devastating earthquake brought back vivid memories for me. I lived through an earthquake when I was a young boy in Morocco, and I know how harrowing it is. At that time, there were forty thousand casualties—nothing close to what has happened in Haiti—but I still recall the traumatic scenes of collapsed buildings and mourning families.
Haiti has now been devastated on a far larger scale. The earthquake—the worst in the region in more than 200 years—is the latest in a series of natural and manmade disasters that have, over the years, turned the Caribbean country into the poorest nation in the Western Hemisphere. Some 80 percent of its nine million people live below the poverty line.
Filed under: concessional lending, IMF, International Monetary Fund, LICs, Low-income countries, Multilateral Cooperation | Tagged: Caribbean, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, earthquake, Haiti, Marshall Plan, Montreal, Port-au-Prince, relief supplies | 4 Comments »