Iceland Central Bank Governor Rehired

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Iceland Central Bank Governor Rehired

Már Guðmundsson

Már Guðmundsson.Photo: Geir Ólafsson.

Minister of Finance Bjarni Benediktsson reappointed Már Guðmundsson as governor of the Central Bank of Iceland for five years on Friday. However, at the same time, Bjarni pointed out that he has established a committee to review the laws on the Central Bank, which “might impact your work at the bank,” as Már’s letter of appointment reads.

Már had previously released a statement saying it was uncertain whether he would seek reappointment if the laws on the management of the Central Bank will be amended.

According to Fréttablaðið, Már does not favor ideas of three central bank governors, as has been suggested, and as was the case before the economic collapse in 2008, but is waiting for the committee’s conclusions before commenting on it.

Neither does the opposition. “To amend legal provisions is one thing, but to carry out fundamental organizational and structural changes is another,” commented MP Steingrímur J. Sigfússon of the Left-Green Movement, former minister of finance, who is now on the committee for reviewing the laws on the Central Bank. “The last thing we need is to create uncertainty around this important institution,” he added.

Chair of Bright Future Guðmundur Steingrímsson agrees. “I haven’t seen any arguments that support increasing Central Bank governors.”

MP for the Social Democrats Oddný G. Harðardóttir, who serves as vice-chair of the parliament’s Budget Committee, pointed out that it is strange to advertise the position of the Central Bank governor before reviewing the laws on the bank has been completed.

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