Experts Available: President Trump To Name David Malpass Head of World Bank
- Foreign Policy & Security
- U.S. Foreign Policy
- International Development
Politico and Bloomberg are reporting that the President is going to name David Malpass, currently Undersecretary for International Affairs at Treasury, as the US pick to replace Jim Yong Kim as the new head of the World Bank. Scholar Martin S. Edwards is available for comment.
Martin S. Edwards, Seton Hall University
Expert on international institutions
Malpass fits the pattern of Bush appointees in having a mix of private sector and government experience, but not having development experience. His appointment fits the Trump pattern of prizing ideological loyalty above all else, and that’s the concern.
The nomination takes place as the right of the US to appoint the World Bank head has been increasingly questioned. The challenge for this administration was less naming a candidate than selling a candidate to the rest of the World. And this problem isn’t attributable to Malpass, it’s attributable to Trump. It’s not clear this administration has the savvy to sell its nominee.
This sets up a potential contest with European countries. Will they want to see the Bank increasingly politicized? Do France, Germany, and the UK have the energy to fight the US on this? Can they agree on a candidate?
The developing world and the NGO community will not be happy at all. While they named very credible nominees in the past, they were unable to coordinate on a non-US candidate. This might change, because no one thought the White House would appoint anyone other than a Trump soldier.
The problems that the Bank faces are certain to worsen. Trump likely wants to downsize the Bank, but the Bank doesn’t need a functionary. It needs a visionary.
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