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Doing Business: World Bank and IMF panel calls for measures to ensure data integrity

The World Bank Development Committee (BM) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) urged the bank to take further steps to “ensure the integrity and credibility of the data,” in the wake of an information manipulation scandal involving its now-canceled “Doing Business” report and IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva.

The panel, which serves as the steering committee of the World Bank Group, said in a statement that the multilateral development lender should take steps to create a culture in which bank staff feel comfortable reporting wrongdoing.

“We call for stronger whistleblower protection and a zero tolerance policy for abuse and misconduct,” the committee said.

The statement follows a decision by the IMF’s executive board on Monday that cleared Georgieva of wrongdoing, after an external investigation alleged that when she was the World Bank’s chief executive in 2017, she and other officials “unduly” lobbied. staff to modify data in the lender’s flagship report “Doing Business” to boost China’s ranking.

The Development Committee’s call for additional steps to be taken to ensure data integrity echoes similar demands by U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, who pushed for a comprehensive review of the allegations, reported by the WilmerHale Law Firm.

“The results of investigations into ‘Doing Business’ irregularities could reduce trust in international financial institutions if strong steps are not taken to drive accountability, protect data integrity and prevent misconduct,” Yellen said in a statement Thursday.


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