Biden World Bank nominee: massive private sector investment needed to alleviate poverty, fight climate change
President Biden’s nominee to lead the World Bank said massive investment from the private sector is needed to alleviate poverty and fight the effects of climate change.
Ajay Banga, who is a former CEO of Mastercard, told Axios in an interview that the bank should work to address both situations, and that it will cost trillions of dollars per year to handle them.
“I think it’s a fallacious argument that says, either-or,” Banga said. “I have every intention of focusing the bank and its people on the idea that this is an intertwined challenge.”
Biden nominated Banga for the position last month to succeed David Malpass, who has served as World Bank president since 2019. Malpass announced that he would step down from his position by June amid admonishment from Democrats over comments he made that critics said implied denying climate change.
Malpass was asked at a United Nations event in New York last year if he believed that “manmade burning of fossil fuels is rapidly and dangerously warming the planet.” He responded that he did not know as he is “not a scientist.”
Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen reportedly said on Wednesday that she expects Banga to be elected as the next leader of the World Bank. She said during a budget hearing before the House Appropriations Committee’s Subcommittee on State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs that the World Bank should significantly step up its lending to fight climate change and other global crises, Reuters reported.
The U.S. has traditionally chosen the World Bank president, but shareholders from around the world need to approve the candidate. Europe has traditionally chosen the leader for the World Bank’s sister agency, the International Monetary Fund.
Axios reported that Treasury Department officials believe at least 50 percent of the vote is standing behind Banga. Banga has visited four continents and met with 37 different governments in the past three weeks.
Copyright 2023 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.