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The IMF’s top woman accused of favoring China in an economic report

The head of the International Monetary Fund, Kristalina Georgieva, is under heavy criticism. The World Bank, the former employer, says Georgieva lobbied staff to change a report in favor of China. Georgieva denies this.

Before the 63-year-old Bulgarian Kristalina Georgieva took over as director of the International Monetary Fund, she was the CEO of the World Bank for 2.5 years. In this position, she allegedly put undue pressure on the employees involved in the Doing Business report. This report examines the attractiveness of doing business in different countries.

China got 78 in 2018you all place in the ranking. The World Bank made an adjustment in December, stating that China should have been lower: at 85you all place. Just before the report was published, in October 2017, the World Bank held talks with China and the United States about raising capital.

Has China survived?

The World Bank’s Ethics Committee has asked the law firm WilmerHale to prepare a whistleblower report. Lawyers analyzed 80,000 documents and questioned dozens of current and former employees. Wilmerhill now says Georgieva and then-World Bank President Jim Yong Kim had asked their staff to adapt the methodology to spare China.

Basically I don’t agree

Georgieva denies these allegations. “I fundamentally disagree with the findings and interpretations of this research,” she said in a statement. statment. I have already discussed this with the IMF Board of Directors.

However, the report may harm Georgieva, including in her new position. As head of the International Monetary Fund, she must be able to deal with political pressures from countries pushing their own interests forward. The US government says these are “serious results”. A Treasury spokeswoman said the United States was still investigating.


The Wilmerhill Report puts an end to Doing Business for good. In 2018, there was already a buzz about the ranking, due to Chile’s location. The country fell 23 places in the report. Paul Romer, then chief economist at the World Bank, didn’t feel comfortable about it. He wrote in a blog that Chile’s decline had no intrinsic cause, but was caused by the World Bank’s changing methodology.

After an argument with Georgieva and Kim, he said in an interview with the Wall Street Journal that China often pressures employees to change reports. The World Bank issued a statement on Thursday statment You know they’re scrapping Doing Business and seeking a new approach.