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Criticisms are out of date

May 01, 2008

Re "The IMF's dwindling fortunes," Opinion, April 27

Mark Weisbrot reiterates his long-held criticisms of the International Monetary Fund. However, the world has changed, and the IMF has adapted. For instance, IMF Managing Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn recently called for "timely and targeted fiscal stimulus," defying the long-held stereotype that the fund always advocates fiscal tightening.

And contrary to what Weisbrot claims, the IMF is working actively with many low-income countries to ensure that money is available for education and health.

Weisbrot is right that the IMF's voting structure and finances need to be updated, but an ambitious reform to achieve just that is in the works. The IMF is the first international organization that has managed to secure a consensus on redistributing voting rights to help ensure that developing countries' voices are heard.

Masood Ahmed

Washington

The writer is director of the IMF's external relations department.

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