Lesetja Kganyago. Picture: FREDDY MAVUNDA
Lesetja Kganyago. Picture: FREDDY MAVUNDA

Washington — SA’s Reserve Bank head Lesetja Kganyago will take over as chair of the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) policy advisory committee, with immediate effect, the IMF announced on Thursday.

Kganyago, who has served as governor of the Bank since late 2014, takes on a three-year post as head of the International Monetary and Finance Committee (IMFC). He replaces Agustin Carstens, former head of the Bank of Mexico, who resigned in December to take over as head of the Bank for International Settlements (BIS).

His first major role will be to oversee the IMF’s Spring meeting in Washington in mid-April.

The 24-member IMFC is the primary advisory body of the IMF board of governors on the principal policy issues facing the fund. Kganyago is only the second IMFC chair from Africa, and the first from the southern part of the continent. The committee also considers proposals by the executive board to amend the IMF’s articles of agreement.

Although the IMFC, which consists mostly of finance ministers and central bank governors, has no formal decision-making powers, it has become a key instrument for providing strategic direction to the work and policies of the IMF. 

Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba congratulated Kganyago on his appointment and wished him well in the important role. Gigaba said that Kganyago will be an excellent IMFC chair given his experience in international financial governance matters and his previous role as the Director-General of National Treasury.

Kganyago currently also chairs committees in the Southern African Development Community and on the Financial Stability Board and, in 2007, led SA’s technical team during its presidency of the G-20.