IDB is first multilateral lender to recognise envoy of Venezuela's Guaido

Sunday, March 17, 2019

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WASHINGTON, United States (AFP) — The Inter-American Development Bank on Friday officially recognised the representative named by Venezuela's opposition leader Juan Guaido, the first multilateral institution to take that step.

Self-proclaimed interim president Guaido named respected Harvard economist Ricardo Hausmann, an exiled former Venezuelan government minister, to represent him at the IDB.

The IDB board of governors “today approved a resolution recognising the appointment by Mr Juan Guaido of Ricardo Hausmann as IDB Governor for Venezuela... effective immediately,” a statement read.

The United States holds 30 per cent of the voting power on the IDB board, against 50 per cent combined for Latin American and Caribbean members.

A “sufficient” number of governors have already approved the nomination, even though voting doesn't officially close until 6:30 pm (2230 GMT), the bank said.

Guaido, the head of Venezuela's opposition-ruled Congress, has been backed by more than 50 countries as he seeks to unseat President Nicolas Maduro, who has been president over an economy in freefall and a worsening humanitarian crisis.

But the International Monetary Fund has said it is awaiting a decision of its members before recognising Guaido rather than Venezuelan leader Nicolas Maduro.

Hausmann served as IDB chief economist from 1994 to 2000, and was Venezuela's planning minister when the government implemented a major economic reform package, which was the focus of a coup attempt in 1992 led by Hugo Chavez, who was jailed but later elected president.

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