Friday 08 Oct 2021 | 21:46 | SYDNEY
Friday 08 Oct 2021 | 21:46 | SYDNEY

Reader riposte: The IMF leadership opportunity

19 May 2011 10:48

Daniel responds to Michael Gaskin's argument that the DSK scandal gives the IMF an opportunity to look beyond Europe for its next leader:

Michael Gaskin's piece on the 'anachronistic limitations on (IMF) leadership appointments' is politically correct, understandable to a point but will not happen. This for three reasons:

  • Europe, that is all EU-countries together plus Norway and Switzerland, is still the largest contributor to the IMF. To have 'one of their own' at the helm is normal.
  • Authoritarian, let alone totalitarian governments have a long history of considering their national’s appointment to high international  posts as an occasion to directly influence an organization. Even if they wanted, such appointees do not enjoy the indispensable liberty of action and independence from direct influence which are  basic requirements for international civil service.
  • The BRICs, and other emerging countries have yet to get used that with increased international leverage comes also a degree of responsibility for a basic level of decency and the good functioning of the international system. China in particular has a sorry record of supporting some of the worst regimes on the planet: DPRK, Myanmar, Zimbabwe, Sudan etc.