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WASHINGTON: (FILES) International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director, Kristalina Georgieva, speaks at a press briefing on the global policy agenda in Washington, DC, during the IMF and World Bank Spring Meetings, on April 13, 2023. – AFP
WASHINGTON: (FILES) International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director, Kristalina Georgieva, speaks at a press briefing on the global policy agenda in Washington, DC, during the IMF and World Bank Spring Meetings, on April 13, 2023. – AFP

IMF confirms Kristalina for second term

WASHINGTON: The IMF executive board confirmed Friday that it had reappointed Kristalina Georgieva to serve for a second five-year term at the helm of the international financial institution. It means that Georgieva, who was the sole candidate in the running to lead the International Monetary Fund, will continue in office when her current term ends on September 30, 2024.

The decision was taken by consensus, the IMF said in a statement confirming the board’s decision. “I am deeply grateful for the trust and support of the Fund’s Executive Board, representing our 190 members, and honored to continue to lead the IMF as Managing Director,” Georgieva said in a statement.

“I look forward to continue serving our membership, together with the highly professional and committed staff of the IMF,” she added. Georgieva, a 70-year-old Bulgarian, has run the IMF since 2019, and told AFP last month that she was making herself “available to serve, if people want me to serve.”

During her tenure, the IMF has helped countries facing financial difficulties during the coronavirus pandemic as well as the havoc wrought by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, especially in Europe. Under a controversial, decades-old agreement between Europe and the United States, the International Monetary Fund has historically been led by a European, and the World Bank by a US citizen.

This arrangement was reaffirmed last year when the Biden administration nominated Ajay Banga, an Indian-born, naturalized US citizen, to run the World Bank, which sits just across the street from the IMF in Washington.

Georgieva faced allegations in 2021 -- which she strongly denied—that she had been involved in amending a popular World Bank business report in order to favor China when she worked at the development lender.

But after reviewing the World Bank report into the incident, the IMF executive board dismissed the allegations and reaffirmed its confidence in Georgieva, allowing her to remain in post. The board’s announcement means that next week’s IMF and World Bank-hosted meetings of the world’s financial leaders in Washington can proceed without a distracting battle over the future of the Fund running in the background. — AFP

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