Is Georgieva the right woman for IMF's top post?

Following a bitter contest the EU has nominated the Chief Executive of the World Bank, Kristalina Georgieva, as its candidate for the post of Managing Director of the IMF. The Bulgarian economist was able to prevail against her rival for the nomination, former Eurogroup chief Jeroen Dijsselbloem. Commentators discuss what course the IMF will take under Georgieva and what her nomination means for the EU.

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Polityka (PL) /

Paris prevails against Berlin once again

Macron has got his way again, Polityka observes:

“Paris said that the IMF needed a European woman. And that she should come from the east of the EU to show respect for this region which has received none of the key posts so far. ... In the final round the ministers chose between Georgieva and the Berlin-backed ex-Eurogroup chief Dijsselbloem. Germany's support for the Dutchman had much to do with party politics. The German finance minister is the Social Democrat Olaf Scholz, who in discussions with his Spanish and Portuguese colleagues appealed to the loyalty of the centre-left parties in the EU, to which the Dutch group of (Frans Timmermans' party colleague) Dijsselbloem belongs.”

Tages-Anzeiger (CH) /

Good for climate protection

With Georgieva in charge environmental protection is likely to play a bigger role at the IMF, Der Tagesanzeiger believes:

“If in the end she really does become managing director of the International Monetary Fund, her time at the World Bank allows us to draw certain conclusions. Because as the latter's chief executive Georgieva played a key part in its restructuring: the global development bank was to become greener and its funding and investment far more focused on climate protection issues. For Georgieva, who wrote her doctoral dissertation on 'Environmental Protection Policy and Economic Growth in the US', this is a life theme. Also within the IMF the view that climate protection and financial systems can no longer be separated now prevails. Georgieva is very familiar with these connections. 'The environment and development are two sides of the same coin,' she says.”

Hämeen Sanomat (FI) /

EU candidate still not in the clear

The EU's candidate will soon exceed the age limit for the IMF presidency. That could harm her candidacy, Hämeen Sanomat comments:

“From the point of view of the IMF, Georgieva's problem is that she'll soon be over 65. Her election as IMF head would require a change in the regulations. ... Georgieva's election must not be taken for granted, even if as a rule the IMF is led by a European and the World Bank by an American. In the event that the regulations can't be changed and the European states can't agree on another IMF candidate, other states will have a chance to put their own nominees in the foreground.”

Observador (PT) /

Gender quotas are unfair

Kristalina Georgieva could become the third woman in a top post determined by the EU. This prompts former EU Commission policy advisor João Marques de Almeida to reflect in Observador on how much sense women's quotas make in politics:

“I think the amendments [introducing women's quotas] trigger unnecessary social imbalances. ... In the end I feel that our societies should be defined by the principles of merit and equal opportunities. I want to live in a society in which women have the same chances as men and climb to leading positions on the basis of their merits and achievements, and not due to the introduction of quotas.”