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The IMF’s decision to help bail out Greece and other developed eurozone states irked many emerging countries. Getting out of Greece scar-free may be a challenge too and one that could indirectly change the Fund’s practices for the better.

The IMF’s decision to provide a third of the funds required to finance Greece when it could no longer access the market in 2010 backfired in spectacular fashion this July, when the recipient defaulted on a payment to its overly generous creditor.

Breaking the taboo, that no one defaults on the IMF, was Greece’s last act before accepting a humiliating deal with its...

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