India in touch with other nations over selection of IMF chief

Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee

NEW DELHI: As the race for the next International Monetary Fund (IMF) chief hots up, Indian Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee Tuesday said he was in touch with his counterparts from developed and emerging economies on the issue and was keeping a close watch on the developments.

“Our executive directors (in IMF) are meeting and exchanging views. And I am regularly being informed what is happening. I am also in touch with other Finance Ministers (of other IMF member nations)”, he told reporters on the sidelines of a conference here.

The post of the IMF managing director fell vacant following the exit of Dominique Strauss-Kahn, who is being tried for charges of sexual assault.

Although the chorus is growing that the next chief should be from an emerging nation, several leaders from European countries have extended their support to Christine Lagarde, Finance Minister of France.

When asked about the possibility of new chief from a developing country, Mukherjee said, “There are set procedures. We did not face this type of problem earlier. Normally, we decide through the process of consensus building and we have the consensus.

“But at the same time, we shall have to keep in mind that it (IMF) is a financial institution. Shareholding and voting power are relevant factors”, he added.

Besides Lagarde, Indian Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia and former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown figure in the list of probables for the top IMF job. -PTI

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