FILE- In this Feb. 6, 2019, file photo David Malpass, undersecretary for international affairs at the Treasury Department, listens to Trish Regan during "Trish Regan Primetime" on Fox Business in Washington. Malpass, the Treasury official nominated by President Donald Trump to head the 189-nation World Bank, has won election to the post. The World Bank says Malpass was approved unanimously by the bank’s 25-member executive board on Friday, April 5. (AP Photo/Sait Serkan Gurbuz, File)

Trump's pick to head the World Bank wins election

April 05, 2019 - 12:55 pm

WASHINGTON (AP) — David Malpass, the Treasury official nominated by President Donald Trump to head the 189-nation World Bank, was elected to the job on Friday.

Malpass was approved unanimously by the bank's 25-member executive board on Friday. He will begin a five-year term next Tuesday succeeding Jim Yong Kim, an Obama administration pick who stepped down earlier this year, three years before his term was to end.

Malpass was serving in the Trump administration as Treasury's under secretary of international affairs. He has been a longtime critics of the World Bank and its sister lending organization, the International Monetary Fund.

However in his Treasury post, Malpass helped win support last year for a $13 billion funding increase for the bank.

Malpass, 63, will be the 13th president of the World Bank. Americans have always headed the World Bank, while a European has always headed the IMF since both institutions were created in the mid-1940s.

Critics have said this tradition was no longer valid in a new era with the growing clout of emerging economics such as China. However, no other country put forward a candidate to challenge Malpass.

Malpass has argued that the World Bank should cut back on its lending to China, which he says is no longer a developing country that depends on the bank's loans because it can borrow on global capital markets. He has argued that the World Bank should be targeting more of its support for development projects to poorer nations.

His candidacy was backed by a global lobbying effort led by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, who promoted Malpass in discussions with foreign finance officials.

The World Bank board had said last month that it would interview Malpass and expected to make its selection before the World Bank and IMF spring meetings that will be held in Washington next week.

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