For a few years now, international institutions, the IMF in particular, have been asking that the economic model focus more on sustainable and inclusive growth (1). Indeed, all G7 players are faced with the same mega-trends: ageing populations, technological breakthroughs (digital economy, artificial intelligence, …), the challenges of migration, and climate change. Governments and corporates alike have to double their efforts to maintain social cohesion and meet the climate emergency. Candriam, a pioneer in socially responsible investment for more than 20 years now, shares this view and considers that private enterprise – by its respect of social and environmental standards, and ability to innovate – can be both the drivers and agent of this change. The asset management industry, by monitoring existing good corporate practices and discovering added-value innovations, has a part to play. We are convinced that the transition will create a wealth of opportunities and innovative solutions that will add greater value to our economic model.
An ability to grasp these opportunities will be crucial in 2019, against a difficult economic background, in which there is a marked tendency for navel-gazing, and an ever more uncertain economic outlook. Market sentiment, currently highly cautious, is in sharp contrast to the enthusiasm with which 2018 was ushered in. And, undeniably, the global economy is facing powerful headwinds: trade and geopolitical tensions, tighter financial conditions in emerging markets, European uncertainties, …
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(1) Inclusive growth involves the implementation of general strategies designed to more evenly distribute growth and curb inequality.