The International Monetary Fund(IMF) has warned governments to gear up for a possible economic storm as growth falls short of expectations.

According to AFP, IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde issued the warning on Sunday during the World Government Summit in Dubai, saying that the economy is growing more slowly than expected.  

Lagarde cited what she called "four clouds" as the main factors undermining the global economy and warned that a "storm" might strike.

The risks include trade tensions and tariff escalations, financial tightening, uncertainty related to the outcome of Brexit and spillover impact and an accelerated slowdown of the Chinese economy.

Regarding the trade tensions, the IMF chief said she has no idea how it is going to pan out but it is already beginning to have an effect on trade, confidence and markets. 

Lagarde also pointed to the risks posed by rising borrowing costs within a context of "heavy debt" racked up by governments, firms and households.

Last month, the IMF lowered its global economic growth forecast for this year from three-point-seven percent to three-point-five percent.

[Photo : YONHAP News]