Worries that a new round of war-induced oil price increases may add to the economic woes of developing and industrialized nations alike are likely to dominate discussions here this week among most of the world's leading bankers and finance ministers.
They are in town for annual meetings of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund, and newspaper headlines will concentrate on world economic issues.
To most Washingtonians, however, global concerns of the World Bank and IMF are all they know about these important international institutions.
What is not generally understood or recognized is the role of the two organizations or the substantial impact they have had on the metropolitan Washington economy.
About 6,800 persons are employed here by the IMF and World Bank, with a combined annual payroll of $330 million a year, making them part of a select list of the region's largest nonfederal employers. But the economic impact throughout the region goes beyond wages.
The two groups are major customers of printing firms in Washington and Baltimore, for example. Riggs National Bank and American Security Bank get a lot of business through the two organizatons. And the IMF alone spends $400,000 a year here for food services.
In a special report in today's Washington Business, The Washington Post looks at the World Bank and IMF as Washington institutions. Separate articles detail the growth of Washington area banks in international lending and local government attention to international business, among other topics.