World Bank President, Robert Zoellick says he will step down June 30

The President of the Bretton Woods institution, The World Bank, Robert Zoellick has announced today Februry 15, that he will step down on June 30, 2012.

Mr. Zoellick would be ending a five-year term as President of the Bank.

In a press release issued by the Bank, he was quoted as saying, ”   I m honored to have led such a world class institution with so many talented and exceptional people. Together we have focused on supporting developing countries to navigate crises and adjust to global economic shifts.

The Bank has recognized that we live in a world of multiple poles of growth where traditional concepts of the “Third World” are now outdated and where developing countries have a key role to play as growth drivers and responsible stakeholders. At the same time, we’ve scaled up our support to poor people, countries, and communities and shown that the Bank can be an indispensable innovator, catalyst, and driver of a modernized multilateralism.”

According to the release, he has among other things achieved the following for the Bank:

– Provided a record $247 billion of support in the key areas of infrastructure, the private sector, agriculture, trade finance, social safety nets, education, health, and the environment;

-The first general capital increase for the Bank in over 20 years, with over half the new capital from developing countries; and a record $90 billion raised for IDA, the World Bank s fund for the poorest, against a very challenging backdrop of donor austerity;

-Putting Food First: Alerted the world to the forthcoming food crisis, and helped marshal new resources and tools to address it. World Bank agriculture lending increased to $6 billion per year.

– Created a new IFC (private sector) Asset Management Company to channel sovereign wealth funds and pension resources (to date $3 billion) to the private sector in Africa and other emerging markets.

He is also credited with modernizing the Bank.

He opened up the World Bank landmark Access to Information policy, and Open Data Initiative throwing open the doors on Bank processes, projects, and data; to boost transparency and accountability all Bank projects have been geo mapped with clearly defined results-measurement.

Last year, the Bank was ranked number one for aid transparency by Publish What You Fund.

He also increased the Bank’s results focus and launched the Bank s third-ever lending instrument Program for Results, which disburses money after verifiable results have been achieved.

“I’m very pleased that when the world needed the Bank to step up, our shareholders responded with expanded resources and support for key reforms that made us quicker, more effective and more open,” he said, adding, “The Bank is now strong, healthy and well positioned for new challenges, and so it is a natural time for me to move on and support new leadership.”

By Emmanuel K. Dogbevi

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