China Says Emerging Powers Should Help Lead IMF

China Says Emerging Powers Should Help Lead IMF

The International Monetary Fund's future leadership should reflect the growing clout of emerging economies, China's central bank governor said on Thursday, joining other developing nations in pressing for greater influence on the world stage.

In its most detailed remarks to date on the crisis faced by International Monetary Fund (IMF) after its head resigned over charges of sexual assault, China said top ranks within the IMF should reflect changing trends in the global economy.

"The composition of senior management should better reflect changes in global economic patterns and represent emerging markets," said Zhou Xiaochuan, the head of the People's Bank of China.

Zhou's remarks came amid intensifying political jockeying over who should lead the fund, an overseer of the world's monetary system.

European politicians have said that a European should lead the IMF, while emerging economies have suggested that one of their own should be elected.

No Chinese officials figure in the list of possible candidates to lead the IMF [ID:nLDE74F1IO], although some analysts and media commentators in China have suggested that Zhu Min, a special adviser at the fund, could take the helm.

Zhou, whose remarks were published in a statement on the central bank's website, said the IMF should pick future leaders based on their "ability, morality and diligence".

"This would be conducive to having an International Monetary Fund managing director who can more effectively lead it."

He stressed that it was crucial for the IMF to elect a strong leader as the fund plays an important role in steering Europe out of its debt crisis.

"We need the support of a strong and vigorous IMF to surmount the current hardships in Europe and ensure that the world economy continues developing in the direction of vigour, sustainability and balance," Zhou said.

It is in China's interests to be represented in the IMF leadership as it has been pressing for the yuan to be included in the IMF's Special Drawing Rights.

China wants its currency to be incorporated in the SDR in part to boost its global economic influence, and to cut its dependence on a weak dollar.

As such, China's foreign ministry said on Thursday that it was "paying close attention" to developments at the IMF, and called for the fund to reform its structure and governance.

  Chris Buckley Reuters