The bank hired the law firm WilmerHale to investigate.
According to a 16-page investigation released by WilmerHale, Chinese government officials had repeatedly expressed concerns to him and the then World Bank President Jim Yong Kim about the country’s ranking.
At the time, Georgieva was in the middle of talks over a capital increase campaign in which China was “expected to play a significant role,” the investigation found.
Georgieva was “directly involved” in improving China’s rankings, according to an independent investigation, which said that during a meeting, the then CEO had “misrepresented the bank’s then-country director of the bank’s relationship with China”. Penalized for failing to manage in a manner and appreciate the importance of “Doing Business Report to the Nation.”
Doing Business team leaders eventually raised China’s ranking by seven places to 78 in the survey, which they could modify, including giving the nation “more credit” for the Chinese secure transaction law, according to the WilmerHale report.
In October 2017, the investigation found that Kim’s colleagues instructed the survey team to simulate how China’s final score might change if data from Taiwan and Hong Kong were included in the country’s existing data. The WilmerHale report says that the leaders of the Doing Business team “believed that the concern was coming directly from President Kim.”
Georgieva, now managing director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), said in a statement that she “fundamentally disagrees with the findings and interpretations of the investigation into the data irregularities as it pertains to my role in the World Bank’s Doing Business report.” of 2018.” and he has briefed the IMF Executive Board on the matter.
Kim has yet to respond to a Granthshala email seeking comment.
According to a source familiar with the matter, the IMF’s executive board has asked the ethics committee to review the Wilmerhall investigation. The Ethics Committee will then report back to the Board with its evaluation.
During a press briefing on Friday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said, “Ms. Georgieva has issued a statement on the IMF’s official website. I will refer you to the relevant authorities for more information. We also noted That is what the World Bank recently released. A statement on suspending the Doing Business report. The Chinese government attaches great importance to the efforts of doing business to improve the business environment, which is clear to all. We hope That the World Bank will take facts as a basis, rules as criteria, adhere to professional, objective, fair and transparent principles, conduct a thorough investigation of relevant issues in accordance with internal review processes, to ensure the professionalism and credibility of the Doing Business report and To better protect the credibility of the World Bank. The reputation of itself and its member states.”
WilmerHale’s investigation also found irregularities related to Saudi Arabia’s data in the 2020 Doing Business Report. Saudi government officials expressed “displeasure” at how their country ranked in the 2019 edition, particularly with the survey team’s failure to identify what the authorities described as “the country’s successful reforms” according to the investigation. What did you see.
As a result, senior bank leaders, including Shimon Jonkov, one of the founders of the Doing Business Report, instructed the survey team to “find a way to transform the data” so that Jordan could be on its so-called “top reformer” list. According to the results of the investigation, the team eventually added points in several categories in Saudi Arabia so that the country could replace top-ranked Jordan.
Jankov said the demand to change Saudi Arabia’s data came from two senior World Bank officials, one of whom previously served as President Kim’s chief of staff and one of China’s leaders in the 2018 edition of Doing Business. was involved in the change in the data, the investigation found.
In a statement released on Thursday, the World Bank said it would close the “Doing Business” report. “The World Bank Group is strongly committed to advancing the role of the private sector in development and providing assistance to governments to design a regulatory environment that supports it. Going forward, we will continue to assess the business and investment environment. Will work on a new approach for the
Granthshala has reached out to the Saudi Embassy in Washington DC and the Saudi Foreign Ministry for comment and is awaiting a response.
Granthshala has also contacted Simeon Jonkov and the Peterson Institute for International Economics where he serves as a senior fellow for comment.
— Jennifer Hauser, Pamela Boykoff, Betsy Klein and Granthshala’s Beijing Bureau contributed reporting.
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