世界銀行首席經濟師Paul Romer在上週五(1月12日)的一篇WSJ專訪中指出,近年該行的Doing Business報告(營商環境報告)近年多次改計算方法,令數據相當不可信,並指會重計最少四年的數據;他又指智利是最受這些更變影響到的國家,背後更可能涉及數據受經濟師政治傾向的影響,他個人更向智利致歉。

“I want to make a personal apology to Chile, and to any other country where we conveyed the wrong impression,” Mr. Romer said. The problems with the report, he said, were “my fault because we did not make things clear enough.”

事件的背景,是智利過去十二年總統之位由Michelle Bachelet及Sebastián Piñera兩位輪替;前者先在2006年至2010年及2014年至今年出任總統,後者則在2010年至2014年及將在今年再接任總統。Paul Romer指出的情況正是Doing Business報告的計法更變,似有刻意令Bachelet任內智利排名顯著下跌的情況。

Doing Business – Paul Romer

The first dashed line shows the break from the Pinera to the Bachelet administrations. The second dashed line notes a change in leadership of DB inside the inside the Bank and a decision not to bring in any new measurements between data years 2016 and 2017.

Romer在週一(1月15日)就再在其網誌就此事作補充,下圖為他在該文的重點:

可以見到智利的Doing Business 排名(最右的一行)在2010至2013年(即Piñera任內)由43位降至34位,即是營商環境好轉;但在近2014年至2017年(Bachelet任內)則由之前的34位大幅惡化至去年的55位。但當Romer除去近年計法更變(左三行),就見到智利的排名只會由46位回升至51位,惡化的幅度並不如新指標所示的嚴重。

目前指控的矛頭,正指向之前負責Doing Business報告的世銀理事、前智利大學教授Augusto Lopez-Claros。他接受WSJ訪問時指就強調計法沒有問題,Doing Business報告所有計法更變都經過Peer Review及,而每次的基礎數據都會與世銀成員國分享及接受評論,過程完全透明及公開。

WSJ的訪問全文:

World Bank Unfairly Influenced Its Own Competitiveness Rankings

The World Bank’s chief economist said it repeatedly changed the methodology of one of its flagship economic reports over several years in ways that were unfair and misleading.


Also published on Medium.

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