IMF board meets with law firm behind data manipulation probe

Washington (AFP) –


The IMF Executive Board has met with the law firm behind a report that found Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva manipulated data in favor of China while in a senior role at the World Bank, the fund announced Monday.

In a brief statement released by IMF spokesman Gerry Rice, the board comprised of 24 directors and the managing director said it "met today with the representatives of the law firm WilmerHale as part of its ongoing review of the matter raised by WilmerHale's investigation of the World Bank's Doing Business 2018 report."

The board will also discuss the matter "soon" with Georgieva, it said.

"The Executive Board remains committed to a thorough, objective, and timely review," the statement added.

The investigation by WilmerHale released last month found that during her time as World Bank CEO, Georgieva was among top officials who pressured staff into changing data to China's benefit in the 2018 edition of its closely watched Doing Business report.

The bank has since scrapped the report that ranked nations based on their investment climate, while Georgieva, who took the top job at the International Monetary Fund in 2019, has called the investigation's findings "wrong" and said she "did not pressure anyone to alter any reports."