IMF voting reform gets go-ahead of ministers

April 13th, 2008 - 4:50 am ICT by admin  

Washington, April 13 (DPA) A long-awaited reform of the International Monetary Fund’s voting procedures that gives developing countries a modest increase in influence has received broad support from the IMF members, Italy’s finance minister said Saturday. Tommaso Padoa-Schioppa said the new voting rules unveiled last month had been “fully endorsed” by the 24 finance ministers attending the IMF’s traditional spring meetings in Washington.

The new initiative would shift voting rights by 2.7 percent away from advanced economies and in favour of developing countries. It still has to be formally approved by 85 percent of the lending institution’s 185 members, according to current voting shares.

IMF Managing Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn described a “long list of ministers” expressing support for the reforms during Saturday’s meeting of the IMF’s International Monetary and Finance Committee and said he was confident it would pass by the end of the month.

But the reforms, unveiled by the IMF’s executive board last month after long and difficult negotiations, still leave industrial nations with greater influence over the body’s decisions, by about 57-43 percent.

A group of 24 developing nations on Friday said they supported the initiative as an initial step but would not rest until they achieved “parity” in the IMF and its sister-lender the World Bank.

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