International Monetary Fund (IMF) chief Kristalina Georgieva warned on Sunday that risks to financial stability had increased and stressed “the need for vigilance” following the recent turmoil in the banking sector. Speaking at a forum in Beijing, the IMF managing director said she expected 2023 “to be another challenging year”, with global growth slowing to below 3.0 per cent due the war in Ukraine, monetary tightening and “scarring” from the pandemic. “Uncertainties are exceptionally high,” with the outlook for the global economy likely to remain weak over the medium term, she told the China Development Forum. “It is also clear that risks to financial stability have increased,” she added. “At a time of higher debt levels, the rapid transition from a prolonged period of low interest rates to much higher rates — necessary to fight inflation — inevitably generates stresses and vulnerabilities, as evidenced by recent developments in the banking sector in some advanced economies.” Her comments came after the financial sector was shaken by the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank and the enforced takeover of Swiss bank Credit Suisse by rival UBS, leading to fears of contagion. Bank shares tumbled on Friday as fears about the health of the financial sector resurfaced, with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz forced to give reassurances about Deutsche Bank after the long-troubled lender became a focus of investor concerns.