Kim takes helm at World Bank
New World Bank President Jim Yong Kim warned Monday that the eurozone crisis poses a deep threat to the global economy as he launched into his first day leading the development lender. The Korean-American physician, who won a contest against developing country candidates in April to run the bank, said the world's economy "remains highly vulnerable." The World Bank has "an economic and moral imperative to help address risks to global growth, no matter where they emerge," he said.
"A strong global economy benefits all countries; a weak global economy makes all countries vulnerable.
"It is urgent that European countries take all necessary measures to restore stability because their actions will impact growth in all regions of the world.
Kim -- a global health expert who contrasts with the bankers and diplomats that Washington has named to run the bank in the past -- pledged to stick to the mission of helping the poorest countries get on their feet.
He gave no hint of any changes to the work of his predecessor, Robert Zoellick.
"I'm humbled and inspired to take over today as president," Kim said at the doorstep of the Washington-based global development lender Monday morning.
"I can't wait to get started."
"I've spent most of my adult life working in some of the poorest communities in the world."
He said the bank will continue to operate "with innovation, with analytic rigor and with great passion, working in partnership with governments, with civil society organizations, with the private sector, and most importantly with the people living in poverty we aspire to serve."
But it was "a pivotal moment" with the eurozone crisis and economic slowdown in the largest countries impacting small, vulnerable economies around the world.
"I will work with our clients and partners to ensure that we are creating a new economic firewall: one that protects people in developing countries against shocks."
"I know from my work in poor communities around the world that, when a crisis hits, and no safety net is in place, the effects can be devastating."
The Daily Independent/Bangladesh/ 4th July 2012