Alejandro Werner to retire as Director of IMF’s western hemisphere department

International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva announced on Wednesday that Alejandro Werner, Director of the Western Hemisphere Department, intends to retire from the Fund on August 31, 2021. Mr. Werner took up the post in 2013.

“Alejandro led the Department through very challenging times and leaves it on a firm footing to carry on the work of assisting our member countries throughout the region,” Ms. Georgieva said. “I deeply appreciated his expertise, sound judgment, and advice and am thankful to him for his excellent service and support.”

During Mr. Werner’s tenure, the IMF strengthened its presence in Latin America, including through the 2015 Annual Meetings in Lima, Peru, and deepened engagement with its Caribbean and North American member countries.

“Alejandro’s deep knowledge of the region and wide-ranging experience in the public and private sectors and in academia have been invaluable,” Ms. Georgieva said. “Alejandro played a pivotal role in crafting the Fund’s advice to regional authorities on issues such as fighting corruption, inequality, and promoting inclusiveness and sustainable growth, which has considerably improved economic prospects for the region. He also focused increased attention on the plight of the more vulnerable countries in the region, including to the threat of climate change.

“More recently, as the world copes with the COVID-19 pandemic, Alejandro has steered his department in helping some of the hardest hit countries, many of which are tourism-dependent economies, to obtain more than $60 billion in emergency financing from the Fund,” Ms. Georgieva said.

A Mexican citizen, Mr. Werner originally joined the Fund in 1995 through the Economist Program. He left the Fund for other professional pursuits, and returned to Mexico to serve as Director of Economic Studies at the Bank of Mexico. He later became Undersecretary of Finance and Public Credit at Mexico’s Finance Ministry. After more than a decade of public service, he joined Mexico’s BBVA Bancomer as head of corporate and investment banking.

Mr. Werner has also held a variety of academic positions in Mexico, Spain, and the United States. A widely published and respected author, he was named a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum in 2007.

The IMF said search for a successor will begin shortly.

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