World Bank President Lays Out Global Development Plan

Photo By: Simone D. McCourtie/World Bank

In his speech at George Washington University last week, Jim Yong Kim, President of the World Bank Group, laid out an extensive plan for advancing global development, prioritizing the need to address income inequality in the world. Kim called for private sector participation, increased support for countries suffering from conflict, and increased awareness and action to halt climate change. 

Kim promised to increase funding from the International Development Association and the International Finance Corporation by 50% for the next three years for fragile and conflict-affected states. He stressed the need to provide aid to countries such as Lebanon and Jordan, whose economies have taken an impact from hosting the growing community of Syrian refugees. 

Though he admitted that the task of creating new jobs would be difficult, Kim argues that this will be the most effective way to boost prosperity for underdeveloped nations: “A critical pathway out of poverty for the poor is through providing an open and transparent connection to local and global markets. This access can unlock entrepreneurial potential for millions.” 

To combat climate change, which will inevitably hit the poorest nations the hardest, Kim emphasized the need for governments, the private sector, civil society, and individuals to work together. He also called for increased financial relief for effects of climate change. 

Kim’s closing emphasized our ability to reach these goals: “We cannot let over a billion people suffer in extreme poverty when we have the tools and the research to change their lives for the better … We can do better. We have to do better.”

Read Jim Yong Kim’s full remarks at the World Bank website.