‘Analytics’ Exclusive: IMF strongly urges the authorities to reconsider plans to override the President’s veto
“IMF staff are dismayed by the announcement that Parliament plans to override the veto of the President to pass amendments that in the view of IMF staff would be harmful to the National Bank of Georgia’s independence and credibility” – James John, the IMF Mission Chief of the International Monetary Fund’s Middle East and Central Asia Department responded to Elene Kvanchilashvili’s TV Program ‘Analytics’.
“We do not see a justification for such action and fear that it would undermine the progress that Georgia has made under the current Fund-supported arrangement and elevate economic uncertainty. The National Bank of Georgia is in our view functioning effectively under its existing succession plan and under the Acting Governor, and passage of the vetoed amendments could imperil rather than enhance the NBG’s role in providing an anchor of stability as a key economic policy institution in the country.
IMF staff had already communicated its serious concerns in a February press statement following the staff visit at that time. We strongly urge the authorities to reconsider plans to override the President’s veto of the NBG law amendments, including to facilitate continued strong and positive engagement with the IMF under Georgia’s Stand-By Arrangement” – reads an exclusive statement sent to ‘Analytics’.
The ruling Georgian Dream party on Wednesday accused the country’s President Salome Zourabichvili of “hampering” the National Bank of Georgia’s operation by preventing appointment of members to its vacant board positions, and said it would overcome the Presidential veto on a bill of amendments on the institution in response.
In response to the ruling party’s accusations, the presidential administration announced that “the activity of the National Bank of Georgia is not affected.” The President’s Parliamentary Secretary, Giorgi Mskhiladze, emphasized at a recent news briefing that “the duties of the NBG President are being performed by one of the most qualified, experienced and professional persons” and that the process of appointing the NBG President will not be delayed. On Friday, Elene Kvanchilashvili’s ‘Analytics’ presented the detailed timeline of the debate over the bill of amendments and President’s veto.