IMF chief rejects China report but promises “frank” meeting with staff

After deliberating on whether she should keep her post, the IMF’s board issued a statement on Monday evening expressing confidence in her.

Georgieva said the board has done “a very credible and serious job”.

“When we finally presented two sides of the story next to each other, there weren’t any,” she told reporters. “But that doesn’t mean that I don’t take the broader message of, making sure that staff can always contact superiors or through institutional channels to report dissatisfaction, disagreement, and throughout my professional life, I strove for it. “

She said she would meet with staff next Monday for a “very frank and open discussion.”

The scandal comes at a delicate time for the two organizations, in the midst of their annual fall meetings that bring together senior officials from around the world. The episode also addresses questions of China’s influence within the Fund, leading some Republicans in Congress to publicly criticize the United States’ decision not to seek its ouster. More broadly, this has raised questions about the integrity of the research published by the IMF.

“Institutions should always strive to do better, even if they are excellent, as is the case with the IMF,” Georgieva said. “IMF staff are exemplary in the way they do their work. There is no doubt about the credibility of the IMF, our data or our research. “

The US Treasury Department plans to closely monitor how Georgieva handles the fallout from this investigation and has made several requests to him as well, according to a source close to the thought of the Biden administration.

The Treasury ruled that there was not enough direct evidence to justify Georgieva’s removal, the source said. But WilmerHale is also working on a second report on potential misconduct by staff members, and the United States plans to take that report as seriously as the first.

In Congress, Georgieva will continue to face suspicion. Next week, the House Financial Services Committee will hold a hearing on US participation in international financial institutions.

“The IMF cannot credibly insist that China adhere to international rules of the road if everyone knows that Ms. Georgieva has acted inappropriately to keep Beijing happy,” said Representative Patrick McHenry (RN.C) .) in a statement to POLITICO. “The Biden administration should have insisted on the highest standards of accountability at the IMF. Instead, they have bowed to pressure from other countries who want to sweep these scandals under the rug. “

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