D. Speeches by Paul Wolfowitz (2005-07)

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Paul Wolfowitz served as 10th President of the World Bank Group from 2005 to 2007.

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  • Publication
    Remarks at Annual Conference of the Parliamentary Network on the World Bank, March 16, 2007
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2007-03-16) Wolfowitz, Paul
    Paul Wolfowitz, President of the World Bank, discussed governance and anticorruption being at the heart of Africa’s development future. He spoke of donor coordination and IDA’s work in the region.
  • Publication
    Remarks at Liberia Partners Forum, Washington DC, February 13, 2007
    (2007-02-13) Wolfowitz, Paul
    In his opening remarks, President of the World Bank, Paul Wolfowitz said that the international community needs to do much more and faster and take advantage of this unique opportunity that Liberians have now, after 25 years of instability, to take control of their destiny. Liberia’s $3.7 billion debt is clearly unsustainable and an unacceptable burden. He called on the international community to work together to clear the arrears so that the country can move forward. He paid tribute to what he terms as the “inspirational leadership of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf,” and added that this new hope must not be allowed to fade away. He said that “Those who remember the horror of the past can hardly imagine that Liberia has now become a place of hope.
  • Publication
    Parliaments and Poverty in Africa
    (2006-10-17) Wolfowitz, Paul
    Paul Wolfowitz, President of the World Bank, reminded participants that it is important to remember the more than 1 billion people worldwide struggling to survive on less than $1 a day. Fighting the scourge of poverty is at the heart of the World Bank Group’s mission. The burden of debt and the disease of corruption threaten to undermine the efforts to meet the Millennium Development Goals. Many regions of the world have made significant progress to improve living standards and reduce poverty. Sub-Saharan Africa is moving dangerously in the opposite direction. Africa’s richest resource, and its best hope, is its people. But more development financing and debt relief is needed. In the long run, neither aid nor debt relief will help the poor escape poverty without a transparent and accountable government. We are seeing an informed African citizenry demanding change. The World Bank Group is committed to supporting champions of reform in both government and civil society. Partnering with parliaments from donor countries is as important as working with parliaments in recipient countries. To achieve true prosperity for our integrated planet, we must work together to help give the poorest among us the chance to find their way out of poverty.
  • Publication
    Transparency in Extractive Industries
    (2006-10-16) Wolfowitz, Paul
    Paul Wolfowitz, President of the World Bank, discussed the fight against poverty during the last 20 years, during which East Asian countries have made progress, but Sub-Saharan African poverty has doubled. Oil revenues far exceed official development assistance. Yet for some countries it has been more of a curse than a blessing. Corruption and waste has led to distorted economies and demoralized societies in which government power has become an object of plunder leading to civil war and social chaos. The Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) aims to improve governance in resource-rich countries through disclosure and verification of company payments and government revenues from oil, gas, and mining. It focuses on transparency, which is one important aspect of governance—but it is an important step towards transforming resources into real development impact, to real effect on the lives of the poor. He spoke about EITI process still facing many challenges ahead. If EITI is to succeed, it must engage every group that has a stake in the country’s future. EITI process requires governments to significantly increase their capacity while coping with other pressing demands. Making EITI succeed means going beyond just EITI in making revenues more transparent. We need to begin a vigorous effort in the area of helping countries recover stolen assets. For most countries EI revenues by themselves will not be enough by themselves to guarantee higher living standards for all citizens. We must do everything we can to help these countries transform their wealth into a brighter future for every citizen.
  • Publication
    Moving Forward from Singapore
    (2006-09-20) Wolfowitz, Paul
    Paul Wolfowitz, President of the World Bank, discussed giving the poor people of the world a chance to escape poverty. He spoke about the actions to promote good governance that are crucial to successful economic development, poverty reduction and helping member countries achieve the Millennium Development Goals. He mentioned issues of global import, particularly the prospects for the Doha Round and the issue of clean, efficient, and affordable energy. He concluded by saying that the Bank Group will continue to remain active in a variety of international efforts to provide global public goods.
  • Publication
    Foreign Aid: Challenges and Opportunities
    (2006-07-31) Wolfowitz, Paul
    Paul Wolfowitz, President of the World Bank, discussed Africa’s challenge to unleash the energy of the people, and give people the opportunity to improve their lives themselves. He talked about the challenge of corruption. He appreciated Africa for improving policies to make it easier for new businesses to take off and for businesses that are established to expand. Africans are taking a lead in helping their continent turn the corner, and donors are raising the bar for development assistance to try to ensure that every dollar is used to create a healthier, better-educated, more prosperous Africa. Governance is taken seriously, with performance-based aid strengthening anti-corruption efforts.
  • Publication
    Trade: The Missing Link to Opportunity
    (2005-12-07) Wolfowitz, Paul
    Paul Wolfowitz, President of the World Bank, argued that the Doha Round presents an opportunity to rewrite the rules of an unfair trading system that holds back the potential of the poorest people. As important as aid is, as important as debt relief is, the opportunities generated by trade are far more significant. Unless the people of Africa and other poor countries have access to markets to sell their products, they will not escape poverty or be able to give their children a better future. He said, under the current rules, rich countries are allowed to keep barriers highest on the goods produced by poor countries. Wolfowitz emphasized that rich countries pay out a total of 280 billion dollars in subsidies to their farmers each year. But the real damage is done to farmers in poor countries who are denied markets to sell their goods. It is their children who go hungry, who are deprived of clean water, medicines, and the most basic necessities of life.
  • Publication
    China a Model Country
    (2005-10-14) Wolfowitz, Paul
    Paul Wolfowitz, President of the World Bank, noted that China has shown astonishing resolve in the last 25 years in fighting poverty, with remarkable progress to show for it. With similar resolve, China can successfully work with the Bank and with other partners to overcome the remaining development challenges it faces today: battling continued poverty, confronting environmental decline, and lowering barriers to global trade. He commented that the upcoming meeting of the G-20 presents a vital opportunity for China and the international community to redress the imbalances in the global economy, to create a more stable and equitable world for future generations. It is the first time that China is hosting this meeting of the G-20-and this is appropriate evidence of China's growing role as a major force in the global economy. The decisions at that meeting can make a difference for the world's poor--between a life of deprivation and suffering or a future with dignity and opportunity.
  • Publication
    Trading for Results: Realizing the Promise of Doha
    (2005-10-12) Wolfowitz, Paul
    Paul Wolfowitz, President of the World Bank, complimented the impressive work of agencies like the Japan International Cooperation Agency and the Japan Bank for International Cooperation. Japan is a big player everywhere in the world. The World Bank depends heavily on Japanese financial markets for borrowing. Today, Japan is a major market for developing countries and a major source of development assistance. Developing countries will need assistance to help their entrepreneurs take advantage of new trade opportunities. A swift and meaningful conclusion to the Doha round is essential if the Bank is to win the fight against poverty, disease, and hunger.
  • Publication
    Japan’s Role in Africa
    (2005-10-11) Wolfowitz, Paul
    Paul Wolfowitz, President of the World Bank, discussed how Japan’s success is an inspirational example for developing countries. Now, Japan is the second largest shareholder in the World Bank and a valued partner. Today the world is challenged to help the poor countries achieve the millennium development goals and that Japan and the World Bank have a common set of priorities in that endeavor. The Hong Kong round of the Doha development trade round is a big challenge ahead. The relationship between Japan and the World Bank is one of the most critical ones.