World Bank president Jim Yong Kim abruptly resigns

Jim Yong Kim has abruptly announced that he will resign as World Bank president on February 1, more than three years ahead of schedule, leaving one of world’s top multilateral economic institutions grappling with confusion and uncertainty over its leadership. 

金墉(Jim Yong Kim)突然宣布,他将于2月1日辞去世界银行(World Bank)行长一职,这比他任期届满时间提前了三年多,此举让这家世界顶级多边经济机构之一面临着领导层的混乱与不确定性。

Mr Kim’s departure is likely to trigger a debate about whether the decades-long tradition of allowing the sitting US administration to pick the president of the World Bank should continue, given Donald Trump’s deep scepticism of multilateral institutions.   

考虑到唐纳德•特朗普(Donald Trump)对多边机构的深切怀疑,金墉的离任很可能引发一场辩论,即几十年来由现任美国政府指定世行行长的传统是否应该继续。

Although there is a formal selection process for the presidency of the World Bank, the board has consistently approved US appointees, while Europeans have won the post of managing director of the International Monetary Fund — an unwritten understanding that was already showing signs of strain amid the growth of emerging economies. 


Scott Morris, a senior fellow at the Center for Global Development and a former US Treasury official under Barack Obama, said the decision over Mr Kim’s successor would be “more contested than it ever has been”, and that it was not a given that a nominee pushed by Mr Trump would prevail. 

全球发展中心(Center for Global Development)高级研究员、巴拉克•奥巴马(Barack Obama)执政时期前美国财政部官员斯科特•莫里斯(Scott Morris)称,对金墉接任者的决定将“比以往任何时候都更具争议”,并表示特朗普提名的人获胜并不是板上钉钉。

There were “rough waters ahead” for the Trump administration in trying to figure this out, he said.


Mr Kim said on Monday he was leaving to join a “firm” — whose name he did not disclose — and would focus on “infrastructure investments in developing economies”, signalling that his departure was voluntary and not forced by the World Bank’s top shareholders.


Kristalina Georgieva, the former EU commissioner who has been serving as World Bank chief executive, will take over as interim president of the World Bank when Mr Kim steps down next month. 

前欧盟专员、世行现任首席执行官克里斯塔利娜•格奥尔基耶娃(Kristalina Georgieva)将于下个月金墉卸任后接任世行临时行长一职。

“It has been a great honour to serve as President of this remarkable institution, full of passionate individuals dedicated to the mission of ending extreme poverty in our lifetime,” Mr Kim said in a statement. “The work of the World Bank Group is more important now than ever as the aspirations of the poor rise all over the world, and problems like climate change, pandemics, famine and refugees continue to grow in both their scale and complexity,” he added. 


Mr Kim, a former top health official and academic, has been at the helm of the World Bank since 2012, when he was tapped for the job by former US president Barack Obama. In 2016, Mr Obama re-appointed him for a second five year-term, which began in the middle of 2017 and was due to expire in 2022. His decision to end his term much earlier has surprised many World Bank insiders and close observers of the institution.