04/17/2012, 00.00
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Korean Jim Yong Kim, head of the World Bank, in the "war" of the loans

The new president is a doctor experienced in treating AIDS and tuberculosis in developing countries. BRICS want to count more and lend more than the World Bank, with better conditions.

Washington (AsiaNews / Agencies)-The U.S. candidate Jim Yong Kim (pictured) is the new president of the World Bank (WB). His appointment by the directors of the organization, reaffirms the U.S influence, excluding another candidate, the Nigerian Finance Minister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala. Until a few days ago there was also a Colombian candidate Jose Antonio Ocampo, who later withdrew from the race. Kim succeeds Robert Zoellick and will be in office for five years starting July 1st.

Kim, 52, of Korean origin, but a naturalized in American citizen, is an expert doctor in the treatment of AIDS and tuberculosis in the developing world. For Zoellick, Kim's experience, who has "seen poverty and vulnerability" first hand, will be invaluable to the WB that "wants to better serve developing nations."

The choice of Kim, a professional in development, is an attempt to counter heavy criticism over they way the Bank always chooses people from the developed world and increasingly the United States.

In the WB, as well as the International Monetary Fund - IMF, whose president is always a European - emerging countries are an increasing presence and want to have more say and influence in the choices made by the two bodies.

According to Grant Thornton International Ltd, in 2011 Brazil, Russia, China and India accounted for 19% of global wealth, and in 2016 their share will be 23%. The G7 countries, instead will fall from 48% to 44%.

The attempts of the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) to influence the World Bank and IMF have often been frustrated. As a result they have decided to launch a development bank project of their own. This project will compete against the WB.

In addition, countries such as China or Brazil, alone, offer loans and benefits to Latin American or African countries at better conditions and with less bureaucracy. In 2010, China lent more to Latin America than the World Bank, Inter-American Development Bank and Export-Import Bank combined. Recently, the China Development Bank signed a loan to Ghana for a one billion U.S. dollars. Last year, the Bank loaned a total of 57 billion dollars.



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