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NEWS

World Bank Group Provided $11.9 Billion to Europe and Central Asia in Fiscal Year 2014

www.worldbank.org
15 July 2014

[Abstract.  Read full report here].

The World Bank Group provided $11.9 billion to Europe and Central Asia (ECA) during fiscal year 2014, aimed at reducing poverty and boosting shared prosperity in the region. Of this, IBRD/IDA provided $5.6 billion of support to the region, IFC delivered $4.7 billion in commitments, and MIGA provided $1.6 billion in political risk insurance and credit enhancement coverage.

Comprising 47 projects, the $5.6 billion of World Bank support to the region over the past fiscal year consists of $4.7 billion in commitments from the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) and $0.9 billion from the International Development Association (IDA).

In addition, the Bank's Europe and Central Asia regionproduced important research and analytical work about critical issues in the region this fiscal year. It also signed 33 Reimbursable Advisory Service agreements with 11 countries in the region for a total amount of $45 million. These agreements provide technical advice to pension and education systems reform, public sector governance and institutional capacity-building, planning and management of infrastructure investments, and other issues.

"Europe and Central Asia was the region hardest hit by the 2009 global economic crisis, and remains the slowest to recover. Although a modest rebound has occurred since 2010, GDP growth grew just 2.2 percent in 2013, and is expected to be only 1.7 percent in 2014," said Laura Tuck, World Bank Vice President for the Europe and Central Asia Region. "The World Bank supported clients' needs over the past fiscal year with innovative, demand-driven operations. We also acted quickly and effectively to respond to urgent situations, such as the crisis in Ukraine, and the catastrophic floods in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia in May."

World Bank ECA Strategy

The ECA region's strategy focuses on two main pillars: 1) competitiveness and shared prosperity through jobs, and 2) environmental, social, and fiscal sustainability, including through climate action. Governance and gender continue to be thematic priorities within interventions of both pillars.  

International Finance Corporation (IFC)

The International Finance Corporation (IFC) this year supported private sector development in ECA with $4.7 billion in commitments in 117 projects, including $1.2 billion in funds mobilized from its partners. IFC also delivered a solid advisory program worth $40 million with a focus on projects in IDA countries, fragile and conflict affected countries, and climate change.

"IFC had another strong year in Europe and Central Asia as the weak economic performance in the Eurozone and political instability in parts of the region continued to affect many countries and businesses in the region," said Tomasz Telma, IFC Director for Europe and Central Asia. "IFC's efforts to support private sector development focused on helping small- and medium-enterprises, developing capital markets, tackling climate change, boosting food security by supporting agribusiness, and increasing private sector participation in infrastructure."

Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA)

During fiscal year 2014, the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA) provided support for six projects with $1.6 billion in political risk insurance and credit enhancement coverage in Europe and Central Asia (ECA). Through these guarantees, the Agency continued to bolster the region's financial sector - a strong focus for MIGA in ECA. MIGA's landmark support to Hungary's Exim Bank this year represented the first use of the Agency's credit enhancement product for a bond issue. 

"Support to middle-income countries is an important pillar of MIGA's strategy," said Keiko Honda, MIGA's Executive Vice President and CEO. "Projects MIGA insures in the region increase banks' ability to lend, diversify the kinds of financial services available to people and businesses, and attract new capital sources to keep industry moving forward." 

[Abstract.  Read full report here].