- International Monetary Fund
- Published Date:
- September 1946
Letter of Transmittal to The Board of Governors
September 27, 1946.
Sirs: Section 10 of the Bylaws of the International Monetary Fund provides that “the Executive Director shall have prepared for presentation at the annual meeting of the Board of Governors an annual report in which shall be discussed the operations and policies of the Fund and which shall make recommendations to the Board of Governors on the problems confronting the Fund.” Because of the short time that has elapsed since the Inaugural Meeting of the Board of Governors, the present report is limited in scope and content.
The first major task of the Fund, the agreement with member countries concerning the initial par values for the currencies, has been undertaken. The Fund's transactions will begin after the required number of par values has been agreed, as provided in the Fund Agreement.
The major considerations of policy which have occupied the Executive Board in the recent period are contained in the Rules and Regulations, which are presented with this report for review by the Board of Governors. It is believed they provide a sufficient basis for preliminary work.
In submitting this report to the Fund, I wish to make two brief comments.
The first is that the work of the Fund has been, to a very high degree, a work of mutual cooperation and understanding. In their concise form, the Rules and Regulations may seem to be a mere formulation of simple and indisputable principles. However, a good many are the result of long discussions concerning the organization as well as the initial policies and operations of the Fund.
During these discussions, delicate and important questions have been solved in a unanimous desire for agreement. It is true that some important problems have not yet been touched, but the short experience which we have just gone through allows us to look forward hopefully to the times ahead.
My second comment concerns the apprehensions which have been voiced in some quarters as to the future of the Fund. The difficult economic and political conditions under which the Fund is starting its operations have been emphasized. Some have wondered whether it would not be better to delay until greater stability prevails.
We have not thought so today in Washington, any more than we did in 1944 at Bretton Woods. Then, as today, we knew that the world would require time to recover from the terrible crises which have upset it since 1914. But we have thought that an effort should be made as soon as possible toward righting it again. It would, of course, have been highly desirable to make such efforts simultaneously in all fields: economic, political, monetary. These would have been the ideal conditions. Should the fact that these conditions do not prevail for the time being deter the Fund from starting its activities? Such has not been our opinion. Immobility is not a policy. To act entails risks. Not to act often entails greater risks. It is with open eyes, conscious of the possible dangers, conscious, too, of the constructive element that the Fund may be able to constitute in the reestablishment of a more stable world, that we enter the path indicated in the report. We know that our work can only be a beginning, that other elements will be needed to complete it. But we hope that the very fact of initiating it will have favorable effects, and that it will constitute both an example and an incentive.
Chairman of the Executive Board and Managing Director.