President Trump picks David Malpass to run the World Bank to curb international multilateralism.

Rose Prince

2019-02-07 07:25:00 Thu ET

President Trump picks David Malpass to run the World Bank to curb international multilateralism. The Trump administration seems to prefer bilateral negotiations for favorable fiscal budgets and trade deals. The World Bank serves the core mission of extending $10+ billion loans to low-income countries to fund investment projects from global markets. A close competitor is the Chinese Infrastructure Investment Bank that uses dollar diplomacy to win allies without stringent concessions (which the World Bank often would require due to multilateral involvement).

Justin Sandefur, senior fellow at the Center for Global Development, suggests that Malpass shows disdain for the World Bank mission of fighting global poverty just as John Bolton, U.S. national security advisor, shows respect for numerous U.N. endeavors. Thus, the recent nomination of David Malpass as World Bank president threatens an implicit multilateral agreement that the U.S. appoints the head of the World Bank while European Union appoints the head of the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The current IMF head, Christine Lagarde, is a former French finance minister and warns against the Sino-American trade war, which may be detrimental to the long-term global economic revival. The Malpass appointment may hence tilt the delicate balance from E.U. multilateral agreement toward U.S. dominance.

 


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