Citi's Buiter: Central banks operating with 'pea shooter'

Global economies need more than central bank policy to stimulate growth in this current environment of low inflation, Willem Buiter, the chief economist at Citigroup, told CNBC on Thursday.

"Central banks are now operating with a pea shooter," he said ahead of the latest decision by the European Central Bank (ECB).

Willem Buiter
Mandel Ngan | AFP | Getty Images
Willem Buiter

He said that policymakers have had trouble generating inflation and will continue to do so in the future. He likened the situation in Europe to Japan, which has dealt with a prolonged period of low inflation for the last few decades.

"(The ECB) simply don't have the tools; except beggar thy neighbor tools," he said.

Buiter has previously warned that the global economy is on the brink of a recession. Citi analysts claimed on February 5 that the global economy was seemingly trapped in a "death spiral" that could lead to further weakness in oil prices, recession and a serious equity bear market.