Lagarde seeks India`s support on IMF bid; plans Delhi visit

Last Updated: Thursday, May 26, 2011 - 22:00

Paris: French candidate for the top post at
IMF Christine Lagarde on Thursday sought the support of India,
which did not commit itself.

Lagarde Finance Minister of France, met India`s Commerce
and Industry Minister Anand Sharma on the sidelines of the
OECD meeting here and solicited New Delhi`s support for her
candidature for Managing Director of International Monetary
Fund.

Sharma told the French Minister that India looks at the
selection process as a part of the overall reform of the
international financial institutions, an official accompanying
Sharma said.

He, however, said that India has high regard for Lagarde
as chair of the G-20 and sees her as a friend.

Meanwhile, Indian Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee said
in New Delhi that developing countries are trying to
consolidate their position to take a view on the candidate for
IMF chief post.

"I am in touch with some of the finance ministers of
developing countries and emerging economies ... We are trying
to consolidate our position where we can take a view,"
he said.

Lagarde is planning to visit India, China and Brazil,
key members of the BRICS countries to drum up support for her
bid.

She announced her candidacy yesterday. "China, Brazil and
India are an absolute necessity...," she told the Wall Street
Journal.

"I would certainly prefer to be endorsed by a very large
majority rather being the European candidate pushed by the
Europeans," Lagarde said.

The post of International Monetary Fund`s Managing
Director fell vacant after the ignominious exit of Dominique
Strauss-Kahn this month over sexual harassment charges.

BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa)
had said convention that choice of IMF chief is made on the
basis of nationality "undermines the legitimacy of the fund".

"We are concerned with public statements made recently by
high-level European officials to the effect that the position
of Managing Director should continue to be occupied by a
European," IMF executive directors representing BRICS had said
in a joint statement on Tuesday.

Historically, IMF Managing Director has always been a
European.

PTI



First Published: Thursday, May 26, 2011 - 22:00

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