Press Release: Selection of IMF Managing Director: Note by the Executive Board on Procedures

March 1, 2000

The Executive Directors of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) aim to reach agreement on the selection of the next Managing Director by consensus. They plan to move toward such consensus through discussion, and through flexibly structured steps intended to narrow the range of candidates so that ultimately only one candidate remains.

There will be a first informal straw poll on Thursday, March 2, and further such polls may follow subsequently. Executive Directors will normally have at least 24 hours' advance notice of second and subsequent straw polls. With regard to Executive Directors representing constituencies of countries, each constituency decides how a common view among constituency members is to be forged and presented to the Board; an Executive Director representing a constituency may not split his vote.

Although an informal straw poll can be only indicative, it will enable the Board, and in particular the Dean (the longest-serving Executive Director) as Chairman, to gauge the support for different candidates and to judge the emergence of a consensus. It should also promote the convergence of views. Each informal straw poll will be conducted by secret ballot, to safeguard the collaborative nature of the process, and also to facilitate flexibility.

Flexibility will also be allowed by the room for discretion that the Dean has for ascertaining opinion among Board members and determining if it is on a convergent trend. And the procedures described above can be modified at the common discretion of Executive Directors at any time. The Executive Board has considerable discretion in setting the procedures for the conduct of its business and consistently seeks to use this discretion to ensure effective and timely actions by the IMF based on broad consensus. Thus, in the selection of the Managing Director, flexibility will take precedence over formalism.


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