Press Release: IMF Managing Director Strauss-Kahn Names Former Polish Prime Minister Marek Belka as Director of the European Department

July 15, 2008

Press Release No. 08/180

Mr. Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), announced today his intention to appoint former Polish Prime Minister Marek Belka as Director of the Fund's European Department. Mr. Belka is currently Under-Secretary General at the United Nations and Executive Secretary of the UN Economic Commission for Europe.

"Marek Belka has outstanding qualifications as an economist and as a policy maker having served as Prime Minister and as Poland's Minister of Finance," Mr. Strauss-Kahn said, adding that he "also has impressive international experience" through the United Nations and other international institutions.

Mr. Belka served as the Prime Minister of Poland from 2004 to 2005 and was also Poland's Deputy Prime Minister in 1997 and Minister of Finance from 2001 to 2002. Prior to that, Mr. Belka served as Chief Economic Adviser to the President of Poland during the periods 1996-97 and 1998-2001.

At the UN, Mr. Belka helped direct Iraq's post-war economy by serving first as Chairman of the Council for International Coordination for Iraq in 2003, and later as Director of Economic Policy responsible for the preparation of economic reforms. He was also a Consultant to the World Bank between 1990 and 1996, dealing with projects in Poland, Central and Eastern Europe, Russia, Uzbekistan and China, and again from 1997 to 2001. He also served as Senior Adviser to JP Morgan for Central and Eastern Europe from 2002 to 2003.

Mr. Belka was the Chair of Economic Theory from 1987 to 1993, and subsequently the Director of the Institute of Economics in the Polish Academy of Sciences from 1993 to 1996. He has a Master's and a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Łódź. He has been a post-doctoral scholar at Columbia University and an American Council of Learned Societies' scholar at the University of Chicago. Mr. Belka has authored several books and articles dealing with socio-economic issues.

Mr. Belka is expected to take up his IMF position in the autumn. He succeeds Michael Deppler, who has retired.


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