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Tag: World Bank

 

AIDS Donors and Patients Need the World Bank – but Only If It Is Hard to Provoke

Earlier this year, Uganda’s President signed into law an Anti-Homosexuality Act  that strengthens penalties against gay people and defines some homosexual acts as crimes punishable by life in prison.  If enforced to its full extent, the law is expected to endanger public health by handicapping HIV prevention and treatment efforts; already, the national police have raided and forced a US-supported HIV/AIDS treatment center to shut down. 

Missing in the Infrastructure Rush: Intact Ecosystems

This year, a common theme of those discussions was financing for infrastructure investment in developing countries.  I’m disappointed, but not surprised, that these conversations tend to focus exclusively on the need for new bricks-and-mortar infrastructure to meet needs for energy, water, or transport services, and seldom acknowledge the need to maintain the ecological infrastructure that already provides a large portion of those services for many of the world’s poor.

Unboiling the Frog: Can the World Bank Legally Adopt “Ending Extreme Poverty” as a Goal?

The World Bank loves to talk about the importance of “good governance” and “strong institutions” and “rule of law” as keys to development success.  Presumably that means that organizations are managed in accordance to their own legal procedures.  The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), the primus inter pares of the many units under the World Bank group umbrella (IDA, IFC, MIGA) has an agreed upon Articles of Agreement.  Article One is worth reproducing in its entirety: 

It’s Spring Meeting Time in Washington, and the World Bank’s Finances Have Never Looked Better. Time for a Bank Resource Review.

The World Bank’s governors will meet this weekend to check in on president Jim Kim’s ambitious reform agenda. Anticipating the weekend’s meetings, the bank has rolled out a series of measures through press releases and speeches over the past two weeks, including the announcement of new global practice leaders, a set of financing measures to boost the bank’s lending capacity, and a completed IDA-17 replenishment agreement.

Does Jim Kim Get Water?

Over the past week World Bank president Jim Kim’s mind seems to have been on water and development.  But what does he mean by “water” and how does this relate to the huge water-related development challenges faced by the World Bank’s borrowers?

World Bank’s Flagging Leadership on Contract Transparency

Over the last few years, the World Bank has put a lot of thought and resources behind making contracting more transparent and to build up the capacity of citizens to get what they are paying for through government procurement.  The bank has designed and financed innovative community-driven projects that publish contracts, it has backed programs like the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative and the Construction Sector Transparency Initiative alongside Open Contracting, it has put together a powerful database of road costs based on World Bank contracts, and it has put out a lot more data on bank-financed contracts themselves.

The Rise of the Regionals

Lost in all of the noise of the post-Lehman crisis response was an important structural shift in the international development landscape: a much bigger footprint for the regional development banks relative to the World Bank.

Starting in 2009, the G20 pursued a number of measures to help developing countries weather the crisis, one of the most visible of which was an agreement to have the multilateral development banks (MDBs) lend aggressively into the crisis, paired with the commitment of new capital from the institutions’ shareholders in subsequent years.

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