|World Bank cancels business report after investigation|
The World Bank has canceled Doing Business, a prominent report rating the business environment of the world’s countries, after an investigation concluded that senior bank management pressured staff to alter data affecting the ranking of China and other nations. Implicated individuals include then-World Bank Chief Executive Kristalina Georgieva, now managing director of the International Monetary Fund, and then-World Bank President Jim Yong Kim. Doing Business, which looks at taxes, red tape, regulation and other business conditions, is cited by some governments in trying to attract investment. It ranks countries on factors such as how straightforward or burdensome it is to register a business, legally enforce a contract, resolve a bankruptcy, get an electrical connection or obtain construction permits. Chinese officials in 2017 and 2018 were eager to see their ranking improve, and so Mr. Kim and Ms. Georgieva and their staff held a series of meetings to discuss ways that the report’s methodology could be altered to improve China’s rankings, according to the investigative report by the law firm WilmerHale. Ms. Georgieva said she fundamentally disagrees with the findings and interpretations of the report.