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Central banks have supported economy, now lawmakers must act, BNP Paribas chair says

Quantitative easing and negative interest rate policies by central banks have helped support the global economy, but now it was time for governments to step up, BNP Paribas chariman told CNBC.

Central banks have been criticized for the failure of expansionary monetary policies and low interest rates to cure low global growth and sluggish trade.

But the French bank's chairman Jean Lemierre said critics should remember that the economic climate may have been worse had central banks not come out with all guns blazing after the global financial crisis.

"Should we criticize what they have done till now? I do not believe so. I think they have done a proper job, and of course we welcome it...Because if we didn't have what they have done, the situation could be worse. We need to be much aware of this," he said in exclusive interview with CNBC aired on Tuesday.

Jean Lemierre, chairman of BNP Paribas SA, speaks during the International Economic Forum of the Americas in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, on Monday, June 13, 2016.
Brent Lewin | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Jean Lemierre, chairman of BNP Paribas SA, speaks during the International Economic Forum of the Americas in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, on Monday, June 13, 2016.

"[But] now, time has come probably for a different mix. The support of the economy cannot only be in the hands of the central banks. Governments have to move forward," he added.

While acknowledging the role of central bankers in stabilizing the precarious world economy, Lemierre also addressed the downside of such policies, such as the risks posted by negative interest rate policy.

"It hasn't been proven yet (that) it works efficiently; we need to monitor this carefully. And it has negative impacts, so we need to be careful about this. My main concern is the risk of bubbles, the risk of poor allocation of credit; and that would be further damaged to the economy and this has to be avoided," he said, adding that it was important "not to go too far" with the negative rates.

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