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Global Economy's Influence on Sustainable Development: A 2023 Outlook

Photo by Abby Anaday / Unsplash

Geneva, Switzerland - A new report from the World Economic Forum identifies potential obstacles to the global economy and their impact on the UN's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Why it matters:

Unstable economic conditions and geopolitical tensions threaten progress toward achieving the UN's SDGs.

This could have significant socioeconomic consequences, particularly in developing countries.

The Key points:

Expectations for regional economic growth vary.

Despite concerns about China's economy in Asia, growth remains promising, particularly for South Asia, including India.

The Middle East and North Africa are on a positive trajectory, with growth estimates on the rise.

In the United States, the economic forecast for the Americas is more vital than in previous months.

In contrast, the economic forecast for Europe appears subdued for 2023, with hopes for a better 2024.

  • The global economy: A majority, 60%, of chief economists expect the global economy to face difficulties in the near term due to unpredictable political and financial climates.
  • Financial climate: The recent surge in inflation is expected to subside, according to 86% of the economists surveyed. However, tight economic conditions could reduce business lending and increase corporate defaults.
  • Impact on developing countries: Challenges such as geopolitical unrest and fiscal austerity could impede progress toward the global SDGs. Projections suggest that the number of people living in extreme poverty worldwide could rise to more than 500 million by 2030 if these challenges persist.

The Big Picture

The report, produced by the World Economic Forum's Center for the New Economy and Society, aims to provide insights into the current global economic situation.

It highlights the areas that policymakers and business leaders need to address.

Saadia Zahidi, Managing Director of the World Economic Forum, highlighted the challenges currently facing developing countries and the critical role of innovative policies, investments, and technological integration in ensuring balanced growth and development initiatives.

In addition, the Sustainable Development Impact Meetings 2023, scheduled for September 18-22 in New York, will focus on the multilateral action needed for the UN SDGs, bringing together more than 1,000 global leaders to discuss concrete steps forward.