IMF contender Carstens calls China visit "fruitful"

Reuters

BEIJING (Reuters) - Mexican Central Bank Governor Agustin Carstens, who is contending to lead the International Monetary Fund, said on Thursday that he held "fruitful" talks with Chinese officials over his candidacy.

Emerging-market economies should have a stronger voice at the IMF and Europe's is over-represented in the global agency, Carstens told a news conference in Beijing.

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He also said dealing with the sovereign debt crisis in Europe is the most urgent task facing the IMF.

Carstens, who is in China to seek support for his IMF bid, rivals front-runner French Finance Minister Christine Lagarde, the favorite to replace former IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn after he was arrested last month for sexual assault charges.

Carstens himself conceded this week that his IMF ambitions may not be realized, calling himself a long-shot candidate.

(Reporting by Koh Gui Qing, Writing by Kevin Yao, Editing by Don Durfee)