On May 3, the World Bank’s 25-member executive board appointed Ajay Banga, former CEO of Mastercard, as the organization’s president for a five-year term starting on June 2. Banga’s mandate is to rejuvenate the institution’s mission to tackle global challenges like climate change.
Banga’s nomination for the presidency of the World Bank was made by US President Joe Biden in late February. Biden stated that Banga is uniquely equipped to lead the World Bank at this critical moment in history, adding that he has critical experience mobilizing public-private resources to tackle the most urgent challenges of our time, including climate change.
Banga was the sole candidate considered to succeed David Malpass, an economist and former US Treasury official during the Trump administration, who was stepping down from the position.
Banga was raised in India and has a distinctive perspective on the opportunities and challenges faced by developing countries. President Biden believes that Banga can help the World Bank achieve its ambitious goal of reducing poverty and expanding prosperity.
Banga’s appointment comes at a crucial moment for the World Bank, as the institution faces the immense challenge of addressing the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has exacerbated poverty and inequality in developing countries worldwide. The World Bank has pledged to support these nations through a comprehensive set of initiatives aimed at providing funding, technical assistance, and policy advice to help them recover from the pandemic and build a more resilient future.
As the new World Bank president, Banga will be tasked with ensuring that these initiatives are effectively implemented and that the organization remains a critical player in the global effort to promote sustainable development and economic growth. With his experience and unique perspective, Banga is well-positioned to lead the World Bank towards a brighter future.