Published: Tue, January 08, 2019
Global News | By Blake Casey

World Bank President Jim Yong Kim resigns

World Bank President Jim Yong Kim resigns

"It has been a great honor to serve as President of this institution, and I want to thank all of you for your support to our mission of ending poverty in the world", Kim wrote to World Bank staff in an email Monday morning.

The resignation comes as a surprise, as Kim was voted in for a second five-year term in the role in 2016.

He will "join a firm and focus on increasing infrastructure investments in developing countries", the World Bank said.

Kim was born on December 8, 1959 and also a Korean-American physician and anthropologist who, serving as the 12th and current President of the World Bank since 2012. But in April, the lender won support from its member countries for a $13 billion capital increase, after the US dropped its objections.

He said he led the Group to mobilize its financing by working with private sector partners to build sustainable, climate-smart infrastructure in developing nations.

Naming Kim's replacement could mark a sharp break with the past as the Trump administration has repeatedly broken with multilateral institutions and conventions of which the president has been highly critical. The board said Monday it will immediately begin the process for picking Kim's successor.

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NPR's requests for comment to the Department of Justice and Makarenko's attorney weren't immediately returned on Saturday. In the past, Russian Federation has sometimes arrested foreigners with the aim of trading prisoners with other countries.

The World Bank has a remit to support worldwide development projects.

Kim cultivated close relations with Trump's daughter Ivanka, who works as a White House adviser. Its sister lending agency, the International Monetary Fund, has always been headed by a European.

Mr Kim, 59, a physician and public health advocate, was nominated by former United States president Barack Obama for a first and second term.

Two people familiar with Kim's shock announcement to the World Bank executive board said he was leaving of his own accord and was "not pushed out" by the Trump administration.

But Paul Cadario, a former World Bank senior manager now at the University of Toronto's Munk School, noted that the Trump administration had not named a representative to the bank's board of directors - meaning the question was likely not high on the administration's radar.

Other countries, including China and other Asian nations, have complained about this pattern.

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