IMF board announces expedited appointment of American citizen Geoffrey Okamoto as first deputy managing director amid COVID-19 ‘exceptional challenges’

Chief White House Correspondent for | + posts

Simon Ateba is Chief White House Correspondent for Today News Africa. Simon covers President Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, the U.S. government, the United Nations, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and other financial and international institutions in Washington D.C. and New York City.

Chief White House Correspondent for | + posts

Simon Ateba is Chief White House Correspondent for Today News Africa. Simon covers President Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, the U.S. government, the United Nations, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and other financial and international institutions in Washington D.C. and New York City.

The International Monetary Fund(IMF) Executive Board has approved the expedited appointment of Mr. Geoffrey Okamoto as First Deputy Managing Director, effective March 19, 2020, eleven days before the date originally announced.

IMF Managing Director Ms. Kristalina Georgieva originally proposed his appointment on March 12, 2020 with an effective start date of March 30.

“Given the exceptional challenges that our member countries are facing with the COVID-19 pandemic, I am very pleased that the IMF’s Executive Board has agreed to advance Geoffrey’s appointment”, Ms. Georgieva said. “I would like to extend a warm welcome to him as he joins the Fund team and I look forward to our working closely together. The IMF is putting all hands-on deck to help our membership address this crisis—and Geoffrey will play a key role in our efforts.”

World Bank President David Malpass and IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva discussing debt management and sustainability for lower-income countries in Washington DC on Monday, February 10, 2020. Photo: Simon Ateba, TODAY NEWS AFRICA
World Bank President David Malpass and IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva discussing debt management and sustainability for lower-income countries in Washington DC on Monday, February 10, 2020. Photo: Simon Ateba, TODAY NEWS AFRICA

Mr. Okamoto added: “I’m thankful for the Executive Board’s confidence in my appointment. Its at times like these when the Fund and its staff perform at their best in serving our member countries. I‘m looking forward to getting to work immediately and helping to lead the Fund in addressing the crisis at hand.”

Okamoto most recently served as U.S. Acting Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for International Finance and Development, where he was charged with overseeing global financial markets; managing coordination with the G-7, G-20 and Financial Stability Board; overseeing international monetary affairs; negotiating on regional and bilateral economic issues; and overseeing U.S. participation in international financial institutions. He previously served as the U.S. Treasury’s Acting Under Secretary for International Affairs and has led the Treasury Department’s negotiations on trade with China, resulting in a Phase I agreement signed in January 2020. He also negotiated successful replenishments to Multilateral Development Bank concessional windows and the Global Environment Facility, as well as helping to establish the Women Entrepreneur’s Finance Initiative (We-Fi).

Simon Ateba

Simon Ateba is Chief White House Correspondent for Today News Africa. Simon covers President Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, the U.S. government, the United Nations, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and other financial and international institutions in Washington D.C. and New York City.

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