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Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2009-10-09) Zoellick, Robert B.Robert B. Zoellick, President of the World Bank, addressed the following issues: seeds of crisis; the changing context; responsible globalization; the current role of the World Bank Group; the role of the World Bank Group in a new post-crisis World; and the reform agenda. He pointed to four aspects of Group’s future role: development finance; delivering knowledge products; the global public goods agenda (such as climate change and communicable diseases); and unforeseen future crises. Reform efforts include: 1) improving development effectiveness with a focus on results, decentralization, gender, investment lending reform, and human resources; 2) promoting accountability and good governance, and 3) increasing cost efficiency. He noted the completion of recent enhancements to the voice and representation of developing and transition countries in the Bank Group. Bretton Woods is being overhauled before our eyes.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2009-09-28) Zoellick, Robert B.Robert B. Zoellick, President of the World Bank Group, discussed the implications of the 2009 financial upheaval that is changing our world. He addressed the following: (i) what are the perceptions and realities of power after this crisis?; (ii) will the U.S. dollar remain the predominant reserve currency?; (iii) will democratic governments permit independent central banks to assume even more authority?; (iv) is the global trading system keeping up with the demands of the global economy?; and (v) what will be the role of developing countries after the crisis? He stressed the opportunity to craft a new system of “Responsible Globalization” allowing balanced growth, financial stability, countering climate change, and advancing opportunities for the poorest.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2009-03-31) Zoellick, Robert B.Robert B. Zoellick, President of the World Bank, recalled a moment in John Maynard Keynes life when he called for deeds that restore the public trust that governments are up to the challenge of the current crisis. What started in 2007 as a financial crisis quickly spiraled into an economic crisis, with estimates for 2009 for the first contraction of the global economy since World War II and the largest decline of trade in 80 years. Developing countries are being battered in successive waves as private capital flows slump sharply. These events could next become a social and human crisis, with political implications. Zoellick reviewed the difficulties for each region of the world. Unlike the 1930s, however, central banks have stepped in with creative solutions to keep credit flowing. But the challenge ahead requires a spirit of innovation backed by action. The World Bank Group’s Board is considering a new proposal: the launch of a $50 billion Global Trade Liquidity Program. Zoellick called for the member of the G-20 to make multilateralism work and to empower the WTO, the IMF, and the World Bank Group to monitor national policies. Bringing sunlight to national decision-making would contribute to transparency, accountability, and consistency across national policies. It is time to institutionalize “early warning” systems to protect the poor from cuts in social programs during times of economic crisis. Modern multilateralism will require that rising economic powers have a larger say in how institutions such as the World Bank and the IMF are run.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2008-10-06) Zoellick, Robert B.Robert B. Zoellick, President of the World Bank, addresses these topics: (i) looking back –to see ahead; (ii) transformation in the global political economy; (iii) storm clouds over multilateralism and markets; (iv) a new multilateral network for a new global economy; (v) a new steering group; (vi) the WTO and the global trading system; (vii) energy and climate change; and (viii) fragile states.