Skip to main content
Open this photo in gallery:

German Development Minister Svenja Schulze attends a news conference after a meeting with Brazilian Environment Minister Marina Silva, in Brasilia, Brazil, on Jan. 30.UESLEI MARCELINO

The next World Bank president should be a woman, Germany’s international development minister told Reuters in remarks that could strengthen the potential candidacy of Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, the American-Nigerian head of the World Trade Organization.

Svenja Schulze, a party ally of Social Democrat Chancellor Olaf Scholz, casts the vote of Germany, one of the multilateral lender’s largest shareholders, in the ballot to choose a successor to David Mulpass, who stands down in June.

“As Germany’s World Bank governor I say: ‘It is time for a woman at the head of the World Bank’,” she said on Tuesday.

“The World Bank must be a pioneer in fighting poverty and global crises like climate change, biodiversity loss and pandemics.”

Malpass, a former Treasury official, was appointed by former U.S. President Donald Trump and has been in office since April 2019. He is standing down before the end of his term. By convention, the World Bank president is a U.S. citizen.

Okonjo-Iweala, who holds dual U.S.-Nigerian citizenship, earlier worked at the World Bank.