LONDON (Reuters) - Bank of England Governor Mark Carney tried to bat away questions about whether he wants to succeed Christine Lagarde as head of the International Monetary Fund on Thursday, saying it was too soon to talk about it.
Carney is due to stand down as BoE governor at the end of January 2020 and is widely considered a potential candidate to replace Lagarde who has been nominated to run the European Central Bank (ECB).
“I think we need to respect the process here,” Carney told reporters, noting Lagarde had to be formally confirmed as ECB president before the IMF launched its own search for its next managing director.
“There’ll come a time when that process launches and that’s probably the right time to answer that question,” he said.
On Tuesday, France’s finance ministry denied a media report that France and Germany had struck an agreement to back Carney to run the IMF.
The job is typically held by a European. Carney, 54, is Canadian by birth but also holds British and Irish passports.
Speaking at a news conference after the publication of the BoE’s latest Financial Stability Report, he said he was committed to steering Britain’s economy as its Brexit deadline on Oct. 31 approaches and to leading the BoE as it searches for a new governor.
“There’s a few orderly transitions and one of them is an orderly (Brexit) transition through Oct. 31 and an orderly transition to my successor and of course I’ll make sure that that is the case,” Carney said when asked if he might be the IMF’s next head.
Reporting by David Milliken, Huw Jones and Costas Pitas; Writing by William Schomberg; editing by Stephen Addison