House Speaker Nancy Pelosi late Thursday criticized the nomination of David Malpass as president of the World Bank, saying he “threatens to undermine the institution’s mission.”
President Donald Trump nominated Malpass, who has been a vocal critic of the World Bank, on Wednesday. While the bank’s board of directors will choose the next president, the role has traditionally gone to an American.
In a statement, Pelosi said Trump “squandered” an opportunity in his choice. “In nominating David Malpass to lead the World Bank, the president has regrettably chosen someone whose questionable commitment to its core values threatens to undermine the institution’s mission and America’s preeminent leadership role in advancing that mission,” she said.
Pelosi said if elected, Malpass must “commit to preserving and strengthening the bank’s multilateral character,” and continue the effort to combat climate change, as well as protect social and human rights. “Anything less would be a failure of American leadership,” she said.
Earlier Thursday, the Financial Times published an op-ed by Malpass in which he laid out his priorities if he’s named World Bank president. To encourage shared economic growth, the bank “must focus on its core mission of aiding developing nations and institute measurable accountability standards,” he wrote.
It what could be seen as a dig at China, Malpass added: “The bank should work to move countries on from lending programs when they achieve higher income levels, allowing it to concentrate on the developing nations most in need of lending.”
Malpass has criticized the World Bank’s lending practices, particularly concerning China, which he says is now rich enough that it doesn’t need as much financial support and should pay higher borrowing costs.
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