Telefonica S.A. has named former IMF Managing Director Rodrigo Rato to the advisory boards of its European and Latin American operations, the Spanish telecoms giant said Friday.

Also joining the Telefonica Europe advisory board is Luis Abril, an erstwhile top aide to CEO Cesar Alierta.

The appointments will serve to "reinforce the global vision of Telefonica," the company, which is active in 25 countries, said in a statement.

Rato, who ran the International Monetary Fund for three years after serving as Spain's economy minister in the 1996-2004 conservative government of Jose Maria Aznar, comes to Telefonica after a stint in the banking sector.

The former IMF chief was CEO of Bankia, formed in 2010 by the merger of seven Spanish banks, until last May, when he stepped down a few days before the troubled financial institution was nationalized.

Rato has faced judicial questioning about possible irregularities in the management of Bankia. EFE