Murilo Portugal has been nominated to succeed Agustin Carstens as a Deputy Managing Director of the IMF. In announcing the proposed appointment, Managing Director Rodrigo de Rato said Portugal, until recently the deputy minister of finance in Brazil, “is ideally qualified to succeed” Carstens, who resigned October 16 to join the transition team of Mexico’s President-elect Felipe Calderon.
De Rato said that Portugal, 58, “possesses economic skills and rich experience in the government of a major emerging market economy and, in addition, knows the Fund extremely well, having served as an Executive Director for seven years” between 1998 and 2005. He also was an Executive Director of the World Bank Group between 1996 and 2000.
In accepting the proposed appointment, Portugal said he was delighted at “the prospect of coming back to work at the Fund, an institution with a superb staff and a fine tradition of consensus building. I regard this as a rare opportunity to serve the IMF’s 184 country members at a time of great importance for the Fund as it implements its Medium-Term Strategy.” He said he hoped his experience as a member of the Executive Board for seven years and as a policymaker in Brazil would allow him “to engage the Fund even more effectively with its entire membership.”
Portugal, who has degrees in both law and economics, was educated at Universidade Federal Fluminense in Rio de Janeiro and at the universities of Cambridge and Manchester in the United Kingdom. He has held a number of senior positions in the Brazilian government. He has been Secretary of the National Treasury, and a member of the board of Banco do Brasil, as well as serving in important posts in the Office of the President and at the Finance and Planning Ministries.
Before nominating Portugal, de Rato consulted with the IMF’s Executive Board about the qualities needed for the post. The Board, which must approve the appointment, is expected to take up Portugal’s nomination in the coming days.