The World Bank president, Mr Jim Yong Kim has announced that he will leave World Bank on February 1, 2019, about three years ahead of schedule, taking most market participants off guard. This resignation will trigger and ongoing debate on the decision of the next president which historically has been decided by the United States and approved by the World Bank board. This pick will be especially interesting as President Donald Trump is skeptical about this and other multi-national and multi-lateral institutions. Mr Kim is leaving to join “a firm” so he seems ready to get out the bank fast, very fast.
Until that president is decided, Ms Kristalina Georgrieva, the former EU commissioner who has been serving as World Bank Chief Executive, will take over as the interim president, until Trump makes a decisions. Of course some Europeans will challenge the decision as they are looking to break the US strangle hold on this position. Historically the US picks the World Bank leader and Europe picks the IMF leader.
Mr Kim was selected by President Obama and severed at World Bank since 2012. He is a former health official and academic, who has tried to make changes at the bank but has been met with opposition from many of its employees.
The bank has challenges as many of the EM economies, emerging markets, are saying they have moved up the ladder and do not need World Bank anymore.