Putin says backs Lagarde as IMF chief

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said on Friday he considered France’s Finance Minister Christine Lagarde as acceptable and serious person to become the International Monetary Fund’s managing director.

“It (Lagarde’s candidacy is quite acceptable. The French candidate is undoubtedly very serious,” Putin told reporters.

On Thursday, Natalya Timakova, a spokeswoman for President Dmitry Medvedev, said he had attacked the dominance of European officials at the IMF and urged more weight for emerging market nations at the fund at a Group of Eight summit.

Ex-Soviet states have put forward Grigory Marchenko, a Moscow-trained economist and now head of the Kazakh central bank, as a replacement for Dominique Strauss-Kahn, who has filed his resignation earlier this month after being charged in New York with sexually assaulting a hotel maid. He denies the charges.

Russian Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin has also supported Marchenko.

Lagarde announced her candidacy on Wednesday. The other declared candidate is Mexican central bank chief Agustin Carstens.

NOVO-OGARYOVO, Russia, May 27 (RIA Novosti) 

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