Bali struck by earthquake as leaders due to attend IMF summit
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Bali struck by earthquake as leaders due to attend IMF summit

A 6.0-MAGNITUDE earthquake struck off the coast of Indonesia’s Bali in the early hours of Thursday, killing four amid a major International Monetary Fund (IMF) summit due to be attended by thousands of regional leaders and delegates.

Some attendees in the tourist Island for the IMF and World Bank annual meetings this week evacuated their hotels as the quake shook the island.

The latest quake came barely a fortnight after a quake-tsunami in Sulawesi, Indonesia, killed more than 2,000 people.

“I felt the quake for at least 30 seconds and I panicked. At first I didn’t want to go out but then I decided to leave,” Katharina Sudiyono, an Indonesian attendee at the summit, told AFP.

SEE ALSO: Indonesia quake: Pilot hails take-off ‘guardian angel’ who died 

Peter Jacobs, head of the Indonesian Central Bank’s IMF-World Bank taskforce, said delegates in Bali’s Nusa Dua district for the summit were quickly informed of the situation.

“Many summit participants woke up and asked questions, but we immediately sent out information to them that there had been an earthquake and the impact in Nusa Dua,” he told AFP.


Governor Bank of England Governor Mark Carney, Indonesia Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati, World Bank President Jim Yong Kim, Indonesia President Joko Widodo, IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde, and Governer of Bank Indonesia Perry Warjiyo attend Balifintech Seminar at International Monetary Fund – World Bank Annual Meeting 2018 in Nusa Dua, Indonesia, Oct 11, 2018. Source: Reuters

There were no immediate reports of damage or injuries in Bali and the summit proceeded Thursday uninterrupted.

“We send our condolences to those affected by the earthquake. Here in Bali, the earthquake has not caused significant damage nor any disruption to the meetings,” an IMF spokesman said.

The conference centre was designed to withstand seismic events, and participants had been told to remain there in the event of a quake. In case of tsunami risk, attendees would be evacuated to a nearby building.

SEE ALSO: Indonesian quake, tsunami sparked mass prison break in Sulawesi 

The annual meetings of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank are being held this week in Bali and attended by more than 19,000 delegates and other guests, including ministers, central bank heads and some leaders, according to Reuters.

Undeterred by the quake, Malaysian Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad will lead his country’s delegation at the summit, the government said.

Foreign Minister Saifuddin Abdullah tweeted that the area where the delegates would be staying was not affected by the quake.

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