Gita Gopinath To Become IMF No. Two Official In Surprise Move

Gita Gopinath To Become IMF No. Two Official In Surprise Move

Washington : The IMF's high profile chief economist Gita Gopinath will become the number two official at the Washington-based crisis lender, the fund announced on Thursday. Gopinath will succeed Geoffrey Okamoto will become the first deputy manager and will be serving under IMF chief Kristalina Georgieva. This will be historic as she will be the first women in the top leadership roles.

Georgieva on Gopinath stated that, it is the "the right person at the right time" taking up leadership roles.

"Especially given that the pandemic has led to an increase in the scale and scope of the macroeconomic challenges facing our member countries, I believe that Gita -- universally recognized as one of the world's leading macroeconomists -- has precisely the expertise that we need for the FDMD role at this point," Georgieva said in the statement.

"Indeed, her particular skill set -- combined with her years of experience at the Fund as Chief Economist -- make her uniquely well qualified."

Gopinath, who was appointed to her current role in October 2018, was due to return to her position at Harvard University in January but will now leave the university. She was born in India but also is a US citizen.

The economist, who leads the IMF team that produces the closely-watched quarterly World Economic Outlook, became a much more visible figure during the Covid-19 pandemic.

She displayed "intellectual leadership in helping the global economy and the Fund to navigate the twists and turns of the worst economic crisis of our lives," Georgieva said.

Gopinath said that "As the pandemic continues its grip on us, the work of the Fund has never been more critical and international cooperation never more important."

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