With the demise of the Managing Director of IMF, Dominique Strauss-Kahn who has just resigned his position due to alleged sexual rape, the momentum is gathering for the job opening to be filled. This time around the Bretton Woods institute that has always European and American boss may be willing to widen its scope of its applicants. Emerging nations are asking that the position of managing director to be filled by one of them. The time has come to give an African a chance to lead the organization at the dawn of 21st century.
IMF in real sense of it should be catering essentially to emerging nations with weak but promising financial wellbeing. “After World War II, the World Bank was established to provide long-term financial and technical assistance to developing countries, and the IMF was created to manage a system of fixed exchange rates. Essentially, the dollar was pegged to gold and other currencies to the dollar. The Americans got the head of the World Bank and the Europeans the IMF,” as Professor Peter Morici assured.
The 67-year institute has always been dominated by European chiefs because of the clout the European nations enjoyed. But the developing and emerging nations are gradually accumulating power due to their increasing numbers that are tantamount to larger voting numbers. At same time the bulging GDP and economic growth of emerging nations including China, India, Brazil, South Africa, Nigeria and others are pretty impressive.
African nations including emerging and developing nations grip on IMF are getting stronger. According to Dr. Jason Wingard, Wharton school of the University of Pennsylvania, “Based on IMF statistics, voting blocks are changing — largely due to economic shifts in global production. For instance, the European Union’s voting block percentage for its 27 member countries will drop from 32.4% to 29.4% after post-2010 reforms. Developing countries will have a combined voting block that is almost 8% larger than European nations. If the next managing director is elected rather than appointed, over two-thirds of post-2010 reform votes will be cast by non-European Union countries’ representatives.”
This is a good sign which bodes well for global financial and economic integration. It shows that in the changing world that developing and emerging nations will have a say in making of monetary and economic decision that effect the entire global village. With the rising and ever increasing power of China and India it is logical that a house of IMF is rearrange and has them and others accommodated.
IMF a lender of last resort mostly caters to developing nations of southern hemisphere and has a stronghold in Africa due to increasing integration of the continent to global economy as its share of global economic activities gets stronger and bigger with increasing GDP.
Economically, Africa is the fastest growing landscape at above 5 percent. The economic outlook for Africa is encouraging and on its recent report IMF states that, “Sub-Saharan Africa’s recovery from the crisis-induced slowdown is well under way, with growth in most countries now back fairly close to the high levels of the mid-2000s. Growth this year is expected to average 5½ percent, and 6 percent in 2012. “
It is not a news anymore neither it is a secret that Africans were not happy with application of the pre-lending requirements before funds were released to the nations of Africa. The criterion that comes with austerity measures embedded in structural adjustment program sapped and arrested African economic development in 1980s and 1990s. The position of IMF boss for Africa will be a compensation and recognition of African endeavor to overcome past mistakes by IMF in Africa.