New York (CNN) President Joe Biden has announced the hiring of former MasterCard executive Ajay Banga. President of the World Bank.
Biden said in a statement Banga is “exceptionally suited to lead the World Bank at this critical moment in history” and has “a proven track record of managing people and organizations and partnering with world leaders around the globe to get results.”
Since 2022, Banka has been a vice president at General Atlantic, a New York-based investment firm. Before that, the 63-year-old was chief executive of MasterCard from 2010 to 2021.
“Growing up in India, Ajay has a unique perspective on the opportunities and challenges facing developing countries and how the World Bank can deliver on its ambitious agenda to reduce poverty and expand prosperity,” Biden said in the statement. Biden promised “extensive experience” in building partnerships to address climate change and financial inclusion as an important qualification for the next World Bank president.
Banga announced last week that he will step down a year early to replace previous president David Malpass, who will serve four years of a five-year term.
Although Malpass has been praised by the World Bank and administration officials for his handling of the global challenges posed by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the Covid-19 pandemic, his tenure has faced controversy following his comments on the change. weather last September. During a panel, he confirmed during the climate committee whether he accepted the scientific consensus that the burning of fossil fuels is dangerously warming the planet.
After much criticism, many opponents called for his resignation. However, she recently told CNN’s Julia Satterley that she has “no regrets” about her four-year tenure.
“We have achieved many things that I wanted… I think it is very important for companies to have energy, new energy, and it is a good time for the World Bank to do that,” he said.
US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen praised the decision to name Banka in a statement.
“He has the right leadership and management skills, the experience of living and working in emerging markets, and the financial expertise to lead the World Bank at a critical time in its history, deliver on its key development goals, and empower the Bank to address the global challenges of climate change,” he said.
The World Bank, a group of 187 countries, provides loans to developing countries to help reduce poverty. Former US President Donald Trump appointed Malpass to lead the World Bank for a five-year term in 2019. As the largest shareholder, the US traditionally appoints its president.
—CNN’s Sam Fossum contributed to this report.