Zoellick deal stitched up.

Amidst the stack of mindless articles carrying verbatim the Bank’s press release on Zoellick’s coronation, Steven Weisman’s piece for the New York Times stands out.  He highlights one of the thorny issues that Zoellick will have to deal with – deciding whether Suzanne Rich Folsom, head of the department of institutional integrity, is doing a good job scaring bad corrupt Bank staff, or was doing a bad job of advancing the interests of the Wolfowitz coterie. Continue reading

Coronation timeline.

Yesterday the board posted this on the timeline for Zoellick’s coronation:  “The Executive Directors have decided to invite the nominee to an informal meeting on June 20, to discuss key issues of interest to the World Bank Group. … Following this meeting, and follow-up interactions and consultations with their respective authorities, the Executive Directors intend to meet again on June 25, 2007 to decide on the Presidency of the Bank. They expect that all the required processes will be completed by June 30, 2007.”

The anointed one.

Nominations for World Bank president close today, and barring a miracle, it will be a one horse race.

In Norway yesterday, Zoellick met with development minister Erik Solheim: “The Norwegian principled position is that this should be an open competition where everyone should be able to run – Chinese, Argentinian, whatever, Norwegian for that matter.  We will work with other governments to make such a procedure for future presidential appointments of the World Bank. That said, we think this is a very good proposal of Mr Zoellick as the new president of the World Bank.” Solheim also said that Europe’s prerogative to choose the head of the IMF should also be abandoned. Continue reading

US should not dictate World Bank president: UK MP

Liberal Democrat shadow international development secretary, Lynne Featherstone MP, has written to chancellor Gordon Brown and development secretary Hilary Benn calling on the British government to nominate another candidate or “failing that, to instruct the executive director on the board of the World Bank not to support the nomination”. Continue reading

Zoellick in Europe: 2 cats, 2 rabbits

In London on Monday, Zoellick sidestepped questions on whether the US should retain the right to annoint the head of the Bank. The FT reports that when asked if he was likely to do a Wolfowitz by bringing in his own people to key positions in the Bank, he quipped: “I don’t have people. I have two cats and two rabbits.” Which does raise the question of whether they would be better qualified than some of the Wolfowitz appointees. Continue reading