American Seeks World Bank's Top Job

U.S. President Barack Obama (R) introduces Dartmouth College President Jim Yong Kim as his nominee to be the next president of the World Bank, in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, March 23, 2012.
U.S. President Barack Obama (R) introduces Dartmouth College President Jim Yong Kim as his nominee to be the next president of the World Bank, in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, March 23, 2012.

Top World  Bank officials will soon decide which of three candidates will become president of the global development institution.  Two of the candidates are finance experts - Nigerian Finance Minister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala and former Colombian Finance Minister Jose Antonio Ocampo. The  U.S. nominee is global health expert Jim Yong Kim.

"They have more than doubled the number of people on treatment in the last 18 months," said Kim. "This is movement in the area of HIV/AIDS the like of which we’ve never seen before."

Over the course of his career, Jim Yong Kim, a medical doctor, has headed efforts to fight AIDS at the United Nations, founded a non-government organization that promotes health care around the world, and taught at Harvard's schools of medicine and public health.  He is now the president of Dartmouth College.

The Korean-born U.S. citizen impressed President Barack Obama, who nominated him for the World Bank job.

"It's time for a development professional to lead the world’s largest development agency," said Obama.

Japan’s Finance Minister Jun Azumi says Kim's work at the World Health Organization was impressive.

"He was a great success on the AIDS problem. He is an extremely suitable candidate for president of the World Bank," said Azumi.

Some development experts, though, say the bank focuses on promoting economic growth to pay for health care, education, and infrastructure.  

World Bank veteran Uri Dadush is now with the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.

"His [Kim’s] background is actually very narrow.  Focused on health, whereas the bank has maybe 20 different sectors of activity," said Dadush.

Nancy Birsdall of the Center for Global Development says Kim may change the World Bank’s culture.

"He [Kim] is very keen on what I would call developing a learning culture, based on evidence, that the role of the bank as a knowledge bank should be emphasized," she said.

Birdsall says Kim is likely to push the bank harder to form partnerships with emerging nations, do more listening, and be quick to learn from projects that fail and apply those lessons to new areas.

The World Bank's president has always been an American, but many major emerging economies want more of a say in the choice of leadership.

While this is the first time there have been multiple candidates, many stories in the financial news say U.S. political and financial clout mean Kim will probably get the job.

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Comment Sorting
by: Zuberi
April 15, 2012 11:04 PM
I think it is the time the world should consider African choice, as it has been regarded as underdeloped continent for so many years. Why not give opportunity the African candidate!!? After all she is the only female candidate available in the list, is it not what you preach for? Gender equality!!?

by: NVO
April 12, 2012 10:19 AM
REVELATION 13:16 will happen in THIS generation! Be forewarned.

by: Cha Cha Cohen
April 09, 2012 12:56 AM
We need a real man like DSK(!) a real fit for WORLD BANK, a man with CHARACTER(!) and a thoughtful SOCIALIST(!) banker, a true PHILANTHROPIST(!), a true HERO(!) fit for our WORLD(!).A true person fit to join the LEADERS OF THE WORLD(!)

by: hamad part 1 of 1
April 07, 2012 2:55 PM
Jim Yong Kim has Not had any financial experiences .So, how could you nominate him to hold this sensitive position in this critical period? Because "He was a great success on the AIDS problem" , you should award the next president of the World Bank to him . In which sick logic what could be acceptable? Obama has disclosed his failed policy by his hands . Who opposes Kim, Obama will fire him immediately without any hesitation. He could issue another individual mandate to pass his nominee.

by: NVO
April 07, 2012 2:11 PM
Do you have the microchip embedded into your right hand or forehead? If so, apply for the job. If not, you need NOT apply. The World Bank is as corrupt as the EU, The Trilateral Commission, The Club of Rome, The Bilderbergs, The Rockefellers, The Rothschilds, The Clintons. The list goes on and on. New World Order is ON THE RISE!

by: Augustina Maduakor Ugo, R.N., M.S.N., P H.D (c)
April 07, 2012 10:06 AM
I want to congratulate Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala for being one of the candidates being considered for this position. She has protrayed a good example for women of high academic integrity and honesty to get to this point of the race, and from Nigeria.

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