An important feature of the Articles of Agreement of the International Monetary Fund is the power which is conferred upon the Fund to adopt final interpretations of its charter. This power is to be found in Article XVIII:
The Bretton Woods Conference of July 1–22, 1944 was one of the most successful conferences of the twentieth century and a landmark in world economic history. Four decades later, economists, historians, and others still marvel at the vision, determination, and idealism of those who created the International Monetary Fund.
The interpretation of provisions in treaties that include gold units of account, such as the Poincare franc or the Germinal franc,1 continues to be a problem for the courts because of the abrogation on April 1, 1978 of an official international price of gold by the Second Amendment of the Fund’s Articles of Agreement. It has been shown in earlier discussions2 that the solutions adopted by the courts have fallen into one or the other of two categories: application of the market price of gold, or the rejection of it.
The Fund can decide whether or not to admit countries to membership. In considering applications, the Fund’s practice is to satisfy itself that the country is a state that conducts all of its international relations and that the obligations of the Articles will be performed. Membership in the Fund had grown to 103 states by the beginning of 1966. Among the non-members are the U.S.S.R. and countries of Eastern Europe, Switzerland, and certain small territories such as Liechtenstein, but this list is not complete. The Eastern European countries include two that are former members of the Fund: Czechoslovakia and Poland. Cuba and Indonesia are also ex-members.