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Peru Congress Unlikely to Name Central Bank Directors in 2012

Peruvian legislators will likely be unable to reach agreement this year on filling vacant seats on the central bank’s board, a congressman said.

The appointment of three directors may have to wait until March, unless a standing committee of Congress votes on the matter during the summer recess starting Dec. 17, said Fernando Andrade, president of the congressional committee on economy, banking and finance, in an interview in Lima today.

Talks to name the directors began more than a year ago. The delay in reaching agreement is the “best example of the dysfunctionality” of Congress where the ruling Gana Peru lacks a working majority, said Francisco Rodriguez, an economist at Bank of America, in an e-mailed report to clients today.

“The election of the central bank directors should be the easiest but it’s tied together” with the appointments to the Ombudsman’s office and Constitutional Court, Andrade said. “This should have been resolved by now. It’s vital.”

A multi-party committee charged with coming up with a list of candidates for the three institutions may request a 60-day extension once a deadline expires tomorrow, said Andrade, who’s a congressman for the Somos Peru party.

His party’s choice for central bank director is Francisco Gonzalez, a former agriculture minister and former chairman of Norbank, which was merged into a bank taken over by Lima-based Banco Financiero in 2001.

President Ollanta Humala replaced three bank directors on the seven-member board in October 2011 and ratified Julio Velarde as bank president to serve a second term.

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