Farewell from Istanbul


The bags are packed, the shuttle buses are waiting, and the conference center here in Istanbul is slowly emptying. More than 15,000 people have come and gone. Now is the time to take stock and figure out how to move forward on the big decisions coming out of Istanbul.

The IMF’s Managing Director, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, called them exactly that in his final speech at the plenary on October 6: “The Istanbul Decisions.” So what are they? The IMF’s policy steering committee, the International Monetary and Financial Committee (IMFC), asked the IMF to move forward in four areas:

  • Updating the IMF’s mandate in light of the big changes in the global economy witnessed during the past decade
  • Reviewing the IMF’s financing role, possibly beefing up its role as a lender of last resort
  • Rethinking multilateral surveillance, with the idea of introducing peer review of economic policies
  • Giving more voice and representation to dynamic emerging market and developing countries
These Istanbul Decisions, Strauss-Kahn said, will be a focal point for the IMF’s work in the coming year.
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