The Nigerian Finance Minister and the Coordinating Minister for the economy, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala on Tuesday rolled out her mission for the World Bank, indicating that creating jobs for the world’s young people would be her priority if finally selected for the top job.
At a press conference to officially announce her nomination for the strongly contested World Bank Group Presidential post, Iweala stated that she is very qualified to head the global institution, irrespective of the concerns that the America’s interest in the job remained her greatest challenge.
She jointly briefed the media with Mukhtar Mansur, the Former Finance Minister and the current alternate Executive Director of the World Bank.
Her words, “Let me say that given the opportunity, I have an advantage of knowing the strengths and weaknesses of the institution being somebody who has managed a complex economy in a developing country.
“With that my vision for the world is for an institution that is strong in terms of tackling what I consider the key, singular most difficult problem confronting both the developing and emerging market today which is job creation, particularly for the youths.
“The World Bank has the ability to combine the strength of the World Bank Group, the International Finance Corporation, (IFC), and MIGA, in terms of bringing to bear all its instruments to help countries solve this problem and by creating an environment in which the private sector can be a creator of jobs.
“If we do not tackle this problem of unemployment in most of our countries, we can look forward to many more springs; it may not be the Arab Spring. So we need an institution that is fast and nimble, that can deploy those financial instruments, and is knowledgeable to tackle those problems of both human and physical infrastructure that is confronting them. Many countries today tackle problems of climate change and those sectoral issues that confront countries as they manage their economies.
“Secondly, building an institution that can work fast to support countries in times of uncertainties and volatilities such as they are facing now with the global financial and economic crisis. So it is to bring the World Bank with all its knowledge, finance and technical assistance instruments to work on the big problem that the developing world faces, that is what I will bring, with practical experience and knowledge gained from both inside and outside the bank.