Rafferty: Next IMF Chief Should be Top Caliber

    Think tanks, academics and senior International Monetary Fund staff should work together to mount a brave and clever campaign for the next IMF chief to ensure that influential countries and big economies will not be able to name a second-rank politician to the post, Kevin Rafferty wrote in an opinion piece published by the Japan Times.

    Rafferty’s op-ed comes amid speculations that current IMF Managing Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn may terminate his term prematurely to vie for the French presidential seat.  

    The former managing editor of the World Bank said the search for the next IMF chief should include a job description with “demanding” qualifications such as academic achievements, high-level government experience, IMF experience and familiarity with Washington proceedings, among others.

    Candidates from China, the U.S. and others with veto power at the United Nations should be disqualified, while candidates from countries with conditional IMF loans should be given higher points, Rafferty suggested.

    “Whoever succeeds Strauss-Kahn should preside over an institution in which Washington has lost its effective veto power,” he said while suggesting there should also be reform within IMF.  

    Some of his suggested candidates are former Chilean Finance Minister Eduardo Aninat, current Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development head Angel Gurria, World Bank Managing Director Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala and Montek Singh Ahluwalia, a former IMF and World Bank official who currently heads India’s planning commission.

    About the author

    • Ivy Mungcal

      As former senior staff writer, Ivy Mungcal contributed to several Devex publications. Her focus is on breaking news, and in particular on global aid reform and trends in the United States, Europe, the Caribbean, and the Americas. Before joining Devex in 2009, Ivy produced specialized content for U.S. and U.K.-based business websites.