The IMF remains central to efforts to restore the global economy to a robust and sustained growth path. The institution’s work during FY20111 focused on providing policy advice and technical support to member countries to help achieve this goal, meeting the financing needs of countries to support their adjustment efforts, including through programs in Greece, Ireland, and Portugal (the latter in early FY2012), putting in place systems that will strengthen the institution’s ability to identify and respond to global economic risks as they emerge, and working on reforms that will strengthen the international monetary system.
The International Monetary Fund was founded some 70 years ago near the end of World War II. The founders aimed to build a framework for economic cooperation that would forestall the kinds of economic policies that contributed to the Great Depression of the 1930s and the global conflict that ensued. The world has changed dramatically since 1944, bringing extensive prosperity to many countries and lifting millions out of poverty. The IMF has evolved as well, but in many ways its main purpose—to support the global public good of financial stability and prosperity—remains the same today as when the organization was established.