New Delhi, May 29 : Amid tussle for the top slot in the IMF, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has hoped that a consensus would emerge which is generally acceptable.
Singh noted that the struggle for an “equitable” world order will take long as rich nations do not want to give up power easily.
“... those who exercise power, do not want to give up power easily,” he said on the possible candidates for the post of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director, which fell vacant following resignation of disgraced Dominique Strauss-Kahn.
“The struggle for a better, balanced and more equitable world order, including the management of global institutions like the IMF, World Bank, (UN) Security Council is going to be a long haul, I am afraid,” he told reporters on Saturday night who accompanied him on his visit to Africa. Hoping that a consensus would emerge, Singh said India is in touch with various countries.
However, there is a desire in Europe that an European should occupy the coveted position because very large proportion of IMF funds is in the continent which is dealing with the Euro zone tensions, Singh said.
The developing countries, including India, have been pressing for transparency in the selection of the new IMF chief, even as Europe has announced French Finance Minister Christine Lagarde as its candidate.
The BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) grouping has come out in the open to oppose the notion that the next IMF chief should be from Europe and argued that such a selection criteria undermines the legitimacy of the fund.
The Prime Minister said top positions in international financial institutions must not go to specific countries as a matter of right.
“We would like to remind the industrialised world that ...the best available talent in the world should be available to man these (global) institutions, that is our general position,” Singh said.
Conventionally, the chief of the IMF has always been an European, while the World Bank has always been headed by an American.
Since the US and European nations have over 50 per cent voting shares in the financial institution, it would be very difficult for any candidate outside these countries to reach the top IMF post.
French candidate Christine Lagarde, if appointed, would be the first woman to head the global emergency lender. PTI