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Bern still not sure about its seat on IMF board

Switzerland says its seat on the executive board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) is still not guaranteed.

However, Bern has taken note of Saturday’s decision by the G20 group of finance ministers and central bank governors on IMF reforms.

According to the IMF’s managing director, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Europeans have agreed to give up two of the nine seats they occupy in the organisation. This would allow emerging nations to have more weight within the IMF.

A spokesman at the Swiss finance ministry, Roland Meier, said it was for the time being too early to say what impact the IMF reform would have. Switzerland is aiming to maintain its seat on the board because of its importance as a financial centre.

Two weeks ago, Swiss Finance Minister Hans-Rudolf Merz, said he was confident that Switzerland would be able to keep its seat on the IMF board as a result of its economy, the role of the Swiss franc and its financial contribution to the IMF.

The Swiss government feels it is not affected by any reduction in European Union seats at the IMF.

With the exception of Poland, Switzerland represents a group that is composed of some central Asian members of the former Soviet Union and Serbia.

swissinfo.ch and agencies


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