WASHINGTON (Reuters) – World Bank President David Malpass said the World Bank’s board of directors next month will discuss plans to replace the bank’s leading “Doing Business” rating that was revoked in September 2021 after an outside report revealed data irregularities.
Malpass told an event hosted by Stanford University on Wednesday that there are still issues in deciding how to assess the business climate in a country, but that the bank and its various arms, including the International Finance Corporation, are all working to continue encouraging private sector activity.
“The World Bank is very involved in trying to encourage private sector development in countries,” he said.
The World Bank said in February that it was working on a new approach, tentatively called the Business Enabling Environment Project, which would help countries improve their business environment and attract more investment.
The bank scrapped its annual Doing Business rating a year ago, saying its internal audits and external investigation had raised “ethical issues, including the behavior of former board officials, as well as current and/or former bank employees.”
The bank’s new chief economist, Indermit Gill, told reporters earlier this month that the bank had been listening to its approachers about how to replace the previous rating system, and declined to predict when the new product would be launched.
“We’re going to do it very deliberately, and we’re going to do it right,” he said.