Aspiring IMF leader promises reform to Mbeki

29th July 2007, Comments 0 comments

JOHANNESBURG, July 29, 2007 (AFP) - South African President Thabo Mbeki Sunday met with aspiring IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn, who promised to reform the body in favour of developing countries if elected.

JOHANNESBURG, July 29, 2007 (AFP) - South African President Thabo Mbeki Sunday met with aspiring IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn, who promised to reform the body in favour of developing countries if elected.

The former French finance minister, currently the sole candidate to take over as managing director of the International Monetary Fund, met Mbeki in Pretoria as he makes his way around the world in a bid to boost his candidacy.

Strauss-Kahn, who hopes to take over from Rodrigo Rato current head of the organisation, told Mbeki that if elected, he would do his best to boost the interests of the developed world reform.

"We discussed ways to better include developing countries in the process of selection and decision in the IMF. The world has changed, it's not how it was 50 years ago, Brazil, India and South Africa need more consideration," said Strauss-Kahn.

The credibility of the IMF has taken a battering in recent years, in part for not having a more open selection process for its leader.

In an unwritten agreement, Europe selects the head of the IMF and the United States the head of the World Bank, an arrangement which has angered developing countries who have called for open competition for the posts.

Mbeki said change was necessay but he understood it couldn't be done all at once.

"We are very very keen indeed that these posts, of the IMF and World Bank, we must discontinue this old system, this agreement ... that the US will appoint the president of the world bank and the EU the managing director of the IMF," Mbeki said.

"We want this to be an open process and told him this now. He himself supports that. He would prefer it were an open contest. If he gets elected it's something he would work upon."

Mbeki said he considered Strauss-Kahn a good candidate for the job, who would work to reform the organisation.

"We have known him for many years he is a very competent person and we think he would add enormously to the work of the IMF -- including improving the system of governance of the IMF, making it more representative of the developing world," Mbeki told reporters during a media briefing.

Strauss-Kahn will also be visiting Brazil, China, India, Japan, Mexico, Saudia Arabia and South Korea in a bid to shore up his candidacy.


AFP

Subject: French news

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