who will be next World Bank President What will they do


Balancing Bolton with Powell? The appointment of John Bolton as US ambassador to the United Nations has rung further alarm bells for those following the Bank president process. In the words of Helen Thomas "Bolton's style is to flaunt U.S. superpower military status and to lay down the law to other nations: Our way or the highway. A diplomat he is not". A similar person in charge of the World Bank's significant policy-making and development financing operations could be devastatating.

One official I spoke to just now felt that Bolton's appointment was disastrous, and "a sop to the right". But they were not convinced that the Bank appointment would follow the same pattern. They hoped that Bush might in fact balance out the UN appointment with a more acceptable one for the World Bank. Colin Powell perhaps.

This would certainly please many Bank staffers, and European governments. Indeed I understand some senior European politicians have recently been actively trying to persuade Powell to stand.

It's certainly a possible scenario, but appears optimistic at this point.

Alex Wilks ~ March 10, 2005

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