Revelations that World Bank leaders pressured staff to rig an influential report in China’s favor have once again shed light on the Beijing regime’s influence within the United Nations system.
A recent investigation found that then-World Bank President Jim Yong Kim and then-Chief Executive Kristalina Georgieva had applied “undue pressure” on staff to boost China’s ranking in its 2018 “Doing Business” report. At the time, the World Bank leadership was “consumed with sensitive negotiations” over a major capital increase, a move that increased China’s stake in the lender, investigators said. Leaders had also received repeated overtures from senior Chinese officials wanting the country’s score to be raised to reflect its initiatives at reform.
The fallout from the probe has been swift. The World Bank announced its abandonment of the Doing Business report entirely. Georgieva, now head of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), has faced calls for her resignation, including by The Economist magazine. The embattled chief, however, has vehemently denied the investigation’s findings.
Analysts now say that the scandal has further underscored the Chinese regime’s malign influence in important multilateral institutions.
China’s communist regime sees the existing international order as a threat to its interests, Seth Cropsey, a senior fellow at the Washington-based think tank Hudson Institute, told The Epoch Times. “So they want to break it up whenever possible.”
“Influence and membership and participation in international organizations give them the foot in the door that they need to accomplish that goal.”
And to achieve its ends, Cropsey said, Beijing is “willing to use bribery, threats of force, political pressure” and any other means.
History of Collaboration
The World Bank played an important role in shaping the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) economic reforms in the 1980s and 1990s, when the regime was attempting to extricate the country away from backwater status, according to China expert Michael Pillsbury.
In his book “The Hundred-Year Marathon,” Pillsbury wrote that the World Bank secretly advised the CCP as early as 1983. That year, World Bank executives met with CCP leader Deng Xiaoping. As a result, the bank agreed to study China and recommend how the regime could catch up to the United States economically in the following decades.
By Terri Wu