Yellen Calls for More Ukraine Support as G20 Finance Ministers Gather
BENGALURU, India — Treasury Secretary Janet L. Yellen said on Thursday that the United States would redouble its efforts to marshal global support to help Ukraine fend off Russia one year into its invasion, saying that more must be done to inflict pain on Moscow.
She spoke as top policymakers from around the world gathered in southern India for a meeting that is expected to focus largely on accelerating a global economic recovery after three years of international crises.
Ms. Yellen offered a dark assessment of Russia’s economy, arguing that sanctions imposed by the United States and other Western nations were working to isolate the Kremlin, drain the country of talent and sap its productive capacity. Still, the United States continues to view the conflict as the biggest threat to the global economy, and Ms. Yellen made clear that the Biden administration is prepared to continue punishing Russia for its incursion.
“We will stand with Ukraine in its fight — for as long as it takes,” Ms. Yellen said at a news conference as finance ministers from the Group of 20 nations, which include Russia and China, convened for two days of meetings.
The Treasury secretary said that the United States had already provided more than $46 billion in security, economic and humanitarian assistance to Ukraine and that another $10 billion in economic support would be delivered in the coming months. Ms. Yellen also called on the International Monetary Fund to “move swiftly” with a fully financed loan package for Ukraine. The I.M.F. last year approved more than $1 billion in emergency financing to Ukraine to mitigate the economic impact of the war.
“Continued, robust support for Ukraine will be a major topic of discussion during my time here in India,” Ms. Yellen said.
Despite the urgency to address the crisis in Ukraine, Ms. Yellen offered an upbeat assessment of the global economy, which has begun to recover. While she acknowledged that headwinds remained, she said the world was on more stable footing than last fall, when many were forecasting a global recession.
“It’s fair to say that the global economy is in a better place today than many predicted just a few months ago,” Ms. Yellen said, pointing to a recent global growth upgrade from the I.M.F.
She added that the United States economy was proving to be resilient, with inflation moderating while the labor market remains strong.
During their meetings on Friday and Saturday, finance ministers are also expected to discuss ways to alleviate the debt crises facing many developing countries. Officials are also expected to put pressure on China, which has become one of the world’s largest creditors, to demonstrate more willingness to let more countries restructure their debt.
“I will continue to push for all bilateral official creditors, including China, to participate in meaningful debt treatments for developing countries and emerging markets in distress,” Ms. Yellen said.
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