French finance minister to apply for top IMF job

French Finance Minister Christine Lagarde said on Wednesday she would apply for the position of managing director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

“I decided to put forward my candidacy to the post of the IMF head. I made this decision after careful deliberations and required consultations with the president and the prime minister who fully support my move,” Lagarde said during a press conference in Paris.

Henri Guaino, a special aide to French President Nicolas Sarkozy, already pledged support for Lagarde’s candidacy.

The former IMF chief, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, announced his resignation last Thursday, after he was arrested on charges of attempted rape and sexual assault.

The IMF is traditionally headed by a representative of Western Europe, though the idea of a non-European director to replace Strauss-Kahn is becoming increasingly popular. The BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) group of the world’s fastest growing economies recently said “the convention that the selection of the managing director is made, in practice, on the basis of nationality undermines the legitimacy of the fund.”

Among other potential nominees to the post are Turkey’s former economy minister, Kemal Dervis, Bank of Israel Governor Stanley Fischer and Mexico’s central bank chief, Agustin Carstens. The CIS states nominated Kazakhstan’s national bank chairman, Grigory Marchenko, for the post.

MOSCOW, May 25 (RIA Novosti) 

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