The International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank confirmed the annual meetings scheduled to take place next month in Marrakech will go ahead as planned, despite the devastating earthquake near the city that killed nearly 3,000 people. 

The World Bank President Ajay Banga, the IMF's Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva and Morocco's Minister of Economy and Finance Nadia Fettah Alaoui, said in a statement on Monday night that the event would go ahead.

The World Bank and the IMF said they had been in close contact Since the devastating earthquake with the Moroccan authorities and a team of experts to thoroughly assess Marrakech’s capacity to host the 2023 Annual Meetings. 

While undertaking this assessment, key considerations were that the meetings would not disrupt vital relief and reconstruction efforts, and that the safety of the participants could be assured, they said in the joint statement.     

"Based on a careful review of the findings, the Managements of the World Bank and IMF, together with the Moroccan authorities, have agreed to proceed with holding the 2023 Annual Meetings in Marrakech from October 9 to 15, adapting the content to the circumstances," Banga, Georgieva and Alaoui said.

"As we look ahead to the Meetings, it is of utmost importance that we conduct them in a way that does not hamper the relief efforts under way and that is respectful to the victims and the Moroccan people."

The officials said although it was a difficult time, "we believe that the Annual Meetings also provide an opportunity for the international community to stand by Morocco and its people" during the event scheduled to take place from October 9 to October 15.    

The officials lauded the Moroccans' resilience in the face of tragedy, and also said they were committed to ensuring the safety of all participants.    

The death toll from the 6.8 magnitude earthquake that hit the High Atlas Mountains late evening on September 8 has risen to nearly 3,000 people, and over 5,600 have been injured.

(Editing by Seban Scaria