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Georgieva claims credibility problems are at the World Bank

The managing director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Kristalina Georgieva, defended the “credibility” of the body he directs by ensuring that the “problems” in this regard are in the World Bank (WB).

Georgieva thus responded, at the opening press conference of the IMF and WB annual meeting, to questions about the audit that revealed inappropriate pressure from the World Bank to favor China in a report on business climate when the Bulgarian economist was working there .

The IMF expressed its “full confidence” in Georgieva on Monday after a “thorough” review of allegations of malpractice for having been part of these pressures when she was at the bank in 2017.

“There is no doubt about the credibility of the IMF, of our data, of our research. So the problem is on the other side of the street, ”Georgieva said in reference to the WB headquarters, which is located right in front of the Fund in downtown Washington.

In fact, she remarked that she was hired to work again at the World Bank in January 2017, under the presidency of the American Jim Yong Kim, because “morale was very low and there was an atmosphere of fear” and that “nine months later, a A survey among agency workers showed a significant increase in trust with the management ”.

Regarding the investigation, Georgieva stressed that the IMF executive board, before which he appeared in two long sessions in recent days, did a “very serious” job to examine the accusations.

The agency’s spokesperson, Gerry Rice, confirmed in a statement sent on Monday night that “the executive board considered that the information presented during its review did not show conclusively that the managing director played an inappropriate role with respect to the report“ Doing Business ”when she was executive director of the World Bank.

Shortly after the decision was known, US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said in a statement that there was no reason for Georgieva’s resignation, but warned that the audit had raised “legitimate concerns” and that the Fund and the World Bank they should take steps to “reinforce their integrity and credibility.”

The crisis broke out on September 16 when the law firm Wilmer Hale disclosed an internal audit of the World Bank in which it indicated that several senior officials of the organization, including Georgieva, then put pressure from within the organization in an “undue” way to improve China’s ranking in its regular “Doing Business” report.

The objective was to improve its ranking at a time when the World Bank was seeking Beijing’s support to increase its capital.

As a result of these accusations, the World Bank has canceled the release of the report, one of its most influential publications.

The Bulgarian economist was executive director of the World Bank from January 2017 to October 1, 2019, before going on to head the IMF to succeed France’s Christine Lagarde.


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