Can multilateral development institutions survive the era of Trump?
Last week, U.S. President Donald Trump nominated a new president of the World Bank, a post traditionally occupied by an American. Aid experts were worried, if not necessarily surprised, that the White House nominee—Treasury official David Malpass—has a history of criticizing bodies like the bank.
Commentators picked up on congressional testimony by Malpass from 2017, in which he supported the administration’s view “that globalism and multilateralism have gone too far,” and promised to limit or end U.S. support to underperforming aid institutions. He was more positive about the World Bank in further testimony to Congress last year, noting reforms that had been implemented. But aid experts still fear that his goal will be to rein in the bank’s projects and ensure they serve U.S. interests.