Next World Bank chief: Muhammad Yunus?

Muhammad Yunus, Grameen Bank founder. Photo by: Michael Wuertenberg / World Economic Forum / CC BY-SA

Another name has come up in the list of candidates for the next World Bank head, one that is not from the United States.

Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has proposed Grameen Bank founder Muhammad Yunus to be the next president of the World Bank. She believes Yunus could spread microcredit as a poverty alleviation tool.

Yunus, winner of the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize, has been well regarded in the fields of microfinance and social business. He pioneered the use of small loans to combat poverty in Bangladesh, which gained him the title, “banker of the poor.” His social business model has been copied in many developing countries.

It is a wonder, however, what made Hasina root for Yunus. Rumor had it that Hasina’s government “engineered” Yunus’ dismissal from the central bank of Bangladesh last year. Yunus’ appeal was dismissed by the Supreme Court.

The World Bank is set to select its new president before April 20. The post, by tradition, has always been held by an American.

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About the author

  • Jenny Lei Ravelo

    Jenny Lei Ravelo is a Devex Senior Reporter based in Manila. She covers global health, with a particular focus on the World Health Organization, and other development and humanitarian aid trends in Asia Pacific. Prior to Devex, she wrote for ABS-CBN, one of the largest broadcasting networks in the Philippines, and was a copy editor for various international scientific journals. She received her journalism degree from the University of Santo Tomas.