World Bank: Overview
The World Bank Group (WBG) established in 1944 has its headquarters in Washington, DC and is home to over 10,000 employees stationed in their 120+ offices around the world. The organization is a fusion of five organizations to form one formidable group focused on eliminating extreme poverty by "decreasing the percentage of people living on less than $1.90 a day to no more than 3%"and promoting prosperity by "fostering the income growth of the bottom 40% for every country". To ensure that developing countries gain access to top-notch expertise, the bank is constantly improving its engagement and knowledge sharing methods with key focus on results , reform and open development. The bank currently boast of 13,097 projects in 173 countries worldwide. In 2017 alone, the WBG spent $61.8 billion in loans, grants, equity investments and guarantees to partner countries and private businesses.
Key product/service offerings
Development Projects — Since it commenced operations, the WBG has funded over 12,000 developmental projects through various financing options including loans, interest free credits and grants. Each of the 5 organizations that make up the WBG caters to one aspect of financial services backing up the funding and completion of all developmental projects handled by the WBG. The IBRD provides financial development and policy financing, the IDA provides zero-to low-interest loans and grants, the IFC mobilizes private sector investment and provides advises, MIGA provides political risk insurance and ICSID settles investment disputes. The development projects handled by the WBG exists in the following regions Africa, East Asia and Pacific, Europe and Central Asia, Latin America and Caribbean, Middle east and North Africa and South Asia, and covers the following sectors Agriculture, Education, Energy and Extractive, Financial Sector, Health, Industry and Trade, Transportation, Water/Sanitation and Waste, to name a few. Knowledge and Innovation — The World Bank Group established open data, open learning campus, access to information and open knowledge repository in line with its innovative knowledge sharing initiative and has published over 200,000 documents including reports, documents, and working papers to aid the understanding of programs and policies. All these resources are available free of charge and can be accessed easily via the internet. These publications cover a vast array of topics. Products & Services — The WBG provides financing as well as advisory services to developing countries to aid their decision-making processes as well as successfully complete developmental projects for the benefit of their citizens and humanity at large. A list of the financing products provided by the WBG includes;
(a) Investment Project Financing — Provision of loan, credit and grants to governments of developing countries for the provision of physical/social infrastructure aimed at alleviating poverty and creating sustainable development. (b) Development Policy Financing — Provision of loan, grants, credit and guarantee budget to governments of developing countries for policy and institutional actions
(c) Program-for-results — Monitoring and evaluation of disbursed funds to delivery of expected outcomes with a view to aid developing countries successfully execute and implement their developmental programs
d) Trust funds and grants — Support activities especially in crisis situations in case the banks lending ability is deficient. This product also allows the WBG provide immediate assistance in cases of emergencies or natural disasters.
(e) Private sector options — Provision of direct investment and guarantees through the IFC and MIGA.
(f) Multiphase Programmatic Approach — Enables developing countries breakdown complex engagements into several phases under one program.
(a) Technical Assistance — Provision of technical services in legal, policy, management and governance aimed at assisting developing countries create sustainable, effective and accountable public sectors for the accomplishment of its developmental goals.
(b) Reimbursable Advisory Services — Provision of personalized technical assistance either as standalone or on an existing program. The services provided to clients under this product will be on reimbursed.
(c) Economic and Sector Work — Evaluation of information including data, policies and statistics of countries economy, institutions or social services as baseline for policy and strategy discussions.
(d) Donor Aid Coordination — Coordination of communication based activities and events among donors including brainstorming, information sharing and co-financing.
Press Releases of Current Projects of the WBG
The WBG is constantly releasing news of its latest projects worldwide. Over the last year they have been involved in several projects across several sectors worldwide. A highlight of some WDG projects in the last year include;
The WBG is focused on supporting developing countries both financially and knowledgeably to execute sustainable developmental projects with an aim to eradicating extreme poverty and promoting prosperity. Its projects cuts across a wide array of sectors and reaches almost all regions of the world.