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UPDATE 1-Mexico to propose cenbanker Carstens to head IMF
* IMF in search of new head post Strauss-Kahn's scandal
* Carstens qualified for job, Mexico's finmin says (Adds comment from ministry, IMF background)
MEXICO CITY May 22 (Reuters) - Mexico will formally propose central bank chief Agustin Carstens as a candidate to head the International Monetary Fund, the Finance Ministry said in a statement on Sunday.
Carstens "has the abilities and qualifications needed to lead an institution of the relevance of the International Monetary Fund," the ministry said in a brief release.
Mexico's Finance Minister Ernesto Cordero was in charge of nominating Carstens, the statement added.
Cordero last week said that Carstens would be the best candidate to replace Dominique Strauss-Kahn, who resigned as IMF chief to face charges he tried to rape a hotel maid in New York. For details, see [ID:nN21302711]
The fund will begin accepting nominations on Monday.
The IMF has been run by a European ever since its inception at the end of World War Two, but Strauss-Kahn's arrest has sparked a debate over that tradition. Officials in some emerging market countries have said it was time for someone from the developing world to lead the global lender.
Carstens was a deputy managing director at the IMF for three years before joining Mexican President Felipe Calderon's administration as finance minister in 2006. He became Mexico's central bank governor in January 2010. ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
For a profile of Agustin Carstens: [ID:nN31220972]
For more stories on the IMF successor debate: [ID:nDSK] ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
French Finance Minister Christine Lagarde is seen as the current frontrunner to succeed Strauss-Kahn at the IMF. Britain endorsed Lagarde on Saturday, becoming the first G7 country to officially back her.
Calderon's government has urged publicly that the next IMF boss should not be chosen based on their nationality.
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