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Sub-Sahara Africa receives $9.4b of $57b World Bank investments in developing countries

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World BankOut of the $57 billion World Bank Group commitment to developing countries in the 2011 fiscal year (FY), sub-Sahara Africa receives $9.4 billion, down from crisis levels of $13.85 billion in Fiscal Year 2010 (FY10), says the Group.

The World Bank Group consists of the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), International Development Association (IDA), International Finance Corporation (IFC) and the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA).

According to the Group, IDA’s commitment to the region was $7 billion, for IBRD it was $56 million and $2.1 billion came from IFC. MIGA’s guarantees amounted to $243 million.

“Commitments to sub-Sahara African countries—the Bank’s top priority—were at $9.4 billion in FY11, down from crisis levels of $13.85 billion in FY10 and $9.9 billion in FY09. FY11 commitments to Africa included $7 billion from IDA and $56 million from IBRD; $2.1 billion from IFC; and $243 million in MIGA guarantees for projects in the region”, the World Bank said in a statement published on its website July 1, 2011.

With total commitments of $189 billion since the financial crisis took hold in 2008, the World Bank Group support to developing countries came in at $57.4 billion in fiscal year 2011 which according to the Group, is “still above pre-crisis levels”.

Investment in 2010 FY was $72.8 billion

The Group provided an estimated 712 loans, grants, equity investments and guarantees to promote economic growth, fight poverty, and assist private enterprise, the statement said.

IBRD gave a commitment amount of $26.7 billion as against $44.2 billion in FY 2010, IDA was $16.3 billion compared to last year’s $14.5 billion and the IFC provided $12.3 billion this year and $12.6 billion last FY. MIGA committed an amount of $2.1 billion as guarantees this year.

Most commitments were focused around social protection, infrastructure, job creation and future productivity as well as natural disaster management and climate change.

World Bank Group President, Robert B. Zoellick was quoted in the statement as saying “As the multi-speed recovery takes shape, high and volatile food and fuel prices are stirring new challenges, putting vulnerable populations at risk. The World Bank is honing its focus on areas where we can add most value: targeting the poor and vulnerable; creating opportunities for growth; promoting global collective action; strengthening governance; and managing risk and preparing for crisis.”

By Ekow Quandzie

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