IMF Moves Head-Office Return to January, Requires Vaccinations

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The International Monetary Fund delayed plans to have staff return to its Washington headquarters to January amid rising Covid-19 cases, and said it requires all employees seeking to enter the buildings be vaccinated. 

“In light of the unpredictable length and severity of this new Covid-19 wave, the current phase of the return has been extended until early January 2022, when the situation will be re-assessed,” a spokesman for the fund said by email Friday. “IMF headquarters’ offices are currently open on a voluntary basis to staff members who are vaccinated and agree to regular Covid-19 testing.”

IMF staff have worked from home since last year due to Covid-19. The world’s financial firefighter has been mapping a strategy to allow employees to work part of the week from home beyond the pandemic, people familiar with the plan said in July. More than 90% of the fund’s 2,700 employees are based in Washington.

The IMF is among a string of organizations to rethink work-return plans as the delta variant spurs an increase in infection rates. The World Bank Group this week delayed moving to a 50% building-occupancy cap at its Washington offices until Jan. 3. Both institutions  -- which are part of the United Nations system and were created in 1944 at a conference in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire -- are based in Washington.

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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