March 13, 1986

The White House today announced the United States has proposed to other member governments of the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development the election of Barber B. Conable to succeed A.W. Clausen as President of the World Bank. The present term of Mr. Clausen, who has been President since 1981, will expire on June 30, 1986.

Mr. Conable, 63, currently is a distinguished professor at the University of Rochester (NY). After serving for 20 years as a U.S. Congressman from New York, he retired in 1985. From 1977 until his retirement, he was the ranking Republican member of the House Ways and Means Committee.

In departing on June 30, Mr. Clausen will leave behind an institution with a more effective set of tools to cope with the challenges to development in the coming years.

Mr. Conable was, at the time of his retirement from the U.S. House of Representatives, Chairman of the House Republican Research and Policy Committee. As a member of the House Ways and Means Committee for 18 years and as a member of the Joint Economic Committee, the House Budget Committee, and the Joint Committee on Taxation, Mr. Conable has demonstrated extensive knowledge of economic and financial matters, both domestic and international. Mr. Conable presently serves on the Presidential Blue Ribbon Commission on Defense Management. He previously served on three other Presidential commissions: the Commission on Private Sector Initiatives, the Commission on Social Security Reform, and the Commission on Chemical Warfare Review.

Since Mr. Clausen assumed the Presidency of the World Bank on July 1, 1981, the Bank has conducted the most searching reform of its activities in its 40-year history. To cope with international financial difficulties, the Bank has expanded lending in support of fundamental economic policy changes in major borrowing countries by expanding its policy-based loans from 8 percent of total lending before Mr. Clausen's arrival to an estimated 20 percent this year.

The Bank's President is elected by its Board of Executive Directors, who are selected by the member governments and cast weighted votes in proportion to their capital contributions to the Bank. The United States Director casts about 21 percent of the total vote. It has been customary since the organization of the Bank and the International Monetary Fund in 1946 for the Bank's President to be an American and for the Managing Director of the IMF to be a citizen of another member country. The present Managing Director of the IMF is J. de Larosiere of France.