Senators Urge Yellen to Seek Full Accountability Over IMF Chief
(Bloomberg) -- A bipartisan pair of top senators asked Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen to ensure “full accountability” after an investigation found International Monetary Fund Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva improperly influenced a report in China’s favor in her previous job at the World Bank.
The probe by law firm WilmerHale found that Georgieva, while the top official at the World Bank, applied pressure to boost China’s position in the 2018 edition of the Doing Business report. Georgieva has said she disagrees “fundamentally” with the findings.
“Given how critical it is that this data be and be seen as unimpeachable, these allegations are deeply disturbing,” Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Menendez, a New Jersey Democrat, and ranking member Jim Risch of Idaho said in a Sept. 22 letter seen by Bloomberg Monday. “The impact these allegations could have on the strength and reputation of out international financial institutions and the Bretton Woods system are still unknown -- but surely they will not be good.”
On Sept. 24, Maxine Waters, a California Democrat and chairwoman of the House Financial Services Committee, said the WilmerHale review’s findings were “very troubling,” that the situation undermined the World Bank’s reputation and that it called the IMF’s leadership into question.
On Sept. 22, U.S. Representative French Hill, an Arkansas Republican and one of the most outspoken Congressional critics of last month’s $650 billion IMF reserves issuance, and two other congressmen asked the Treasury to provide recommendations to ensure strict and transparent data integrity in reports by the IMF and World Bank.
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