Guest Author - Rebecca Graf
The World Bank Group was created in 1944 to aid Europe in reconstruction after World War II. It has since grown into five agencies: The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, The International Development Association, The International Finance Corporation, The Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency, and The International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes. The goal, or mission, of the entire World Bank Group is to “end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity.”(1) It works with the world to be a “vital source of financial and technical assistance to developing countries around the world.” (2)
In April 2012, The New York Times released an article titled “U.S. Candidate is Chosen to Lead the World Bank.” In the article, it is discussed the election of Jim Yong Kim as the one to take over the World Bank Group. This branch of the United Nations is not one directly involved in peacekeeping but has been there to help the peacekeeping efforts. Many feel that it will become more involved due to the choice of Kim as the leader since so much of his experience has involved the poor and feel that he will direct the World Bank Group to focus “more on very poor countries and less on emerging markets.” (3) As much of the intra-state peacekeeping operations since the Cold War has come from those countries that are not part of the emerging market wave, this could mean that the World Bank Group will be heavily involved in the peacekeeping operations or at least come in after peace has been achieved.
This group would not directly affect the peacekeeping operations but only assist them. Hindrance would only come if the countries involved demanded more action from the World Bank Group earlier in the process than the UN feels like it needs to be there. This is an organization that is there to help the fledgling countries pull themselves up by the bootstraps and overcome extreme poverty. It is a noble effort if it does not get caught up in the political pull of the UN and the rest of the world more than it already has.
(1) “About Us,” The World Bank Group, http://web.worldbank.org/WBSITE/EXTERNAL/EXTABOUTUS/0,,contentMDK:20046292~menuPK:1696892~pagePK:51123644~piPK:329829~theSitePK:29708,00.html.
(2) “What We Do,” The World Bank Group, http://web.worldbank.org/WBSITE/EXTERNAL/EXTABOUTUS/0,,contentMDK:20103838~menuPK:1696997~pagePK:51123644~piPK:329829~theSitePK:29708,00.html.
(3) Annie Lowery, “U.S. Candidate is Chosen to Lead World Bank,” April 16, 2012, http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/17/business/global/world-bank-officially-selects-kim-as-president.html?_r=0.