BEIJING - China's President Xi Jinping on Wednesday urged international unity and cooperation to support an economic recovery that has been threatened by a pandemic and security challenges, while rapping sanctions as a "double-edged sword."

"The Ukraine crisis sounds an alarm for the world," Xi said at the opening ceremony of the BRICS Business Forum via video link. "Facts once again have proven that sanctions are a double-edged sword."

Earlier in June, the World Bank said January global growth may ease to 2.9% this year from 5.7% in 2021, significantly slower than 4.1% anticipated in January, as the war in Ukraine amplified a global slowdown already bruised by COVID-19.

Xi called for greater coordination on economic policy to avoid a fragile recovery from being disrupted.

China would step up macro-policy adjustments and take more effective measures to achieve its annual economic and social development goals while minimising the impact of the COVID-19 epidemic as much as possible, Xi said, without giving details.

China's economy showed signs of recovery in May after slumping in the prior month, but consumption remained weak, underlining the challenges for policymakers amid a persistent drag from disruptive COVID curbs.

The BRICS nations are Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.

(Reporting by Ryan Woo and Ella Cao, Editing by Bernadette Baum)