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IMF executive board reaffirms ‘full confidence’ in managing director Kristalina Georgieva’s leadership

She did not direct staff to boost China's ranking, IMF Board said

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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 executive board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Monday reaffirmed its “full confidence” in the managing director Kristalina Georgieva‘s leadership, following a painstaking investigation that lasted several weeks.

A World Bank investigation had concluded that the IMF Chief directed staff to boost China’s ranking in a world economies report released in 2018 when she was the head of the World Bank, a wild accusation she vehemently denied.

“The Executive Board considered that the information presented in the course of its review did not conclusively demonstrate that the Managing Director played an improper role regarding the Doing Business 2018 Report when she was CEO of the World Bank,” the IMF board said in a statement. “Having looked at all the evidence presented, the Executive Board reaffirms its full confidence in the Managing Director’s leadership and ability to continue to effectively carry out her duties. The Board trusts in the Managing Director’s commitment to maintaining the highest standards of governance and integrity in the IMF.”

It added, “The Executive Board also reiterates its own commitment to supporting the Managing Director in maintaining the highest standards of governance and integrity in the data, research, and operations of the IMF and has confidence in the impartiality and analytical excellence of IMF staff and in the IMF’s robust and effective channels for complaint, dissent, and accountability. At the same time, the Executive Board plans to meet to consider possible additional steps to ensure the strength of institutional safeguards in these areas.

The Executive Board looks forward to continuing to work with the Managing Director, the rest of the Management team, and the IMF’s dedicated staff to address the serious challenges facing the global economy and the IMF’s member countries.”

In a statement, Georgieva said she was “pleased that after a comprehensive, impartial review of the facts, the IMF Board agrees that the allegations were unfounded. I want to thank the Board for expressing its full confidence in my leadership. Trust and integrity are the cornerstones of the multinational organizations that I have faithfully served for more than four decades.”

“This has obviously been a difficult episode for me personally. However, I want to express my unyielding support for the independence and integrity of institutions such as the World Bank and IMF; and my respect for all those committed to protecting the values on which these organizations are founded,” she said. “As the IMF meets this week, I am humbled to lead such a talented team that is working tirelessly to address the world’s greatest challenges, from combatting COVID-19 to fighting climate change and tackling economic inequities.” 

Read Full statement by the IMF Executive Board on Its Review on the Investigation of the World Bank’s Doing Business 2018 Report

October 11, 2021

Washington, DC: The IMF Executive Board met today to conclude its review of the matter raised by WilmerHale’s investigation of the World Bank’s Doing Business 2018 report. This was the eighth such Board meeting on this matter, as part of the Executive Board’s commitment to a thorough, objective, and timely review. In particular, the Executive Board had two extensive discussions each with the representatives of WilmerHale as well as with the Managing Director. The Executive Board also took note that the World Bank’s investigation of potential World Bank staff misconduct in the Doing Business report matter is ongoing.

The Executive Board considered that the information presented in the course of its review did not conclusively demonstrate that the Managing Director played an improper role regarding the Doing Business 2018 Report when she was CEO of the World Bank.

Having looked at all the evidence presented, the Executive Board reaffirms its full confidence in the Managing Director’s leadership and ability to continue to effectively carry out her duties. The Board trusts in the Managing Director’s commitment to maintaining the highest standards of governance and integrity in the IMF.

The Executive Board also reiterates its own commitment to supporting the Managing Director in maintaining the highest standards of governance and integrity in the data, research, and operations of the IMF and has confidence in the impartiality and analytical excellence of IMF staff and in the IMF’s robust and effective channels for complaint, dissent, and accountability. At the same time, the Executive Board plans to meet to consider possible additional steps to ensure the strength of institutional safeguards in these areas.

The Executive Board looks forward to continuing to work with the Managing Director, the rest of the Management team, and the IMF’s dedicated staff to address the serious challenges facing the global economy and the IMF’s member countries.

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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