Washington (AFP)

Global growth is "fragile" and "threatened" especially because of trade tensions, said Thursday the outgoing Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Christine Lagarde, in an exclusive interview with AFP in Washington.

Calling the expansion "rather mediocre", she also urged leaders to dialogue to try to "resolve uncertainties around the world," in reference to the trade war between the United States and China that weighs on trade around the world, or Brexit, which darkens the future in Europe.

"Be it trade relations, Brexit, technological threats, these are man-made problems that can be tackled by man," she added, noting that little femininity would not hurt. "

The IMF lowered its global growth forecast to 3.2% at the end of July. Since then, he warned that trade tensions could further slow down activity.

For its part, the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) expects for 2019 the world's "weakest growth since the financial crisis", when it fell to 2.9% in 2008 before dive to -0.5% the following year.

Asked if she could do more to convince the leaders when she heads the European Central Bank (ECB) in November, Christine Lagarde replied: "I will certainly continue to be determined to make sure that we focus on job creation, productivity, stability. "

However, she also insisted that monetary institutions had to be "predictable" and "stick to facts and economic data".

"There is enough uncertainty around the world to not add uncertainty about what a central bank will do," she said.

While US President Donald Trump continues to criticize the US central bank and its president Jerome Powell, she recalled "constantly" defending the independence of central bankers.

"When I was head of the IMF, in countries where I saw a governor of a central bank linked to aspirations or political imperatives, it did not turn out well," she said. reacted, pointing out that it did not refer to the United States or Europe but "to countries smaller countries where the independence of the governor of the central bank is sometimes threatened".

© 2019 AFP