WASHINGTON, DC, Sept 17 – Kristalina Georgieva, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Thursday issued a statement disputing a report on the Investigation into Data Irregularities in Doing Business 2018 and Doing Business 2020.
In the statement released by IMF, she said: “I disagree fundamentally with the findings and interpretations of the Investigation of Data Irregularities as it relates to my role in the World Bank’s Doing Business report of 2018. I have already had an initial briefing with the IMF’s Executive Board on this matter.”
Earlier Thursday, the World Bank released a statement that it has authorised the release of the report: Data Irregularities in Doing Business 2018 and Doing Business 2020 – Investigation Findings and Report to the Board of Executive Directors,” saying it was an independent external review of the facts and circumstances around previously reported data irregularities in the 2018 and 2020 Doing Business reports.
The World Bank’s ethics committee is said to have called for the independent investigation into the data irregularities.
The report, prepared by law firm WilmerHale has raised questions about China’s influence at the World Bank, with allegations of pressure on Georgieva who was formerly chief executive of the Bank and the then-World Bank President Jim Yong Kim for changes in the Doing Business reports that allegedly raised points for China, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Azerbaijan.
The World Bank has also announced that it will be cancelling the entire “Doing Business” report on business climates, saying internal audits and that the independent investigation into the alleged data irregularities had raised questions on the conduct of former World Bank officials as well as current and former staff.