James D. Wolfensohn, President of the World Bank Group, addressed the annual meetings of the World Bank and the International
Monetary Fund. He discussed the context in which
the Bank operates today; the role of the Bank in
development now, and in the coming years; what the Bank can
do to achieve its objectives in an effective and accountable
manner; and the Bank’s immediate and early initiatives. He called for a new IDA compact. The problem of debt overhang continues. He focused on the power of partnerships. He mentioned the need to develop an institutional culture focused on excellence and results.
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The World Bank is a vital source of financial and technical assistance to developing countries around the world. We are not a bank in the ordinary sense but a unique partnership to reduce poverty and support development.