Last updated: April 2017
The World Bank is supporting the implementation of the National Community-Driven Development Project (NCDDP) that aim to empower villagers to choose, plan, build, and monitor small infrastructure projects that communities need most, such as bridges, roads, health clinics, and schools. Scheduled to run until 2021, the project is expected to reach about 7 million people in rural communities across Myanmar. Currently the project is operating in 8,800 villages in 47 townships, home to over 5.4 million people. In the first three years of implementation, there are 6,770 subprojects, including 1,460 school rehabilitation or renovations, and over 2,300 km of foot path and access roads.
The World Bank is providing financial and technical support to the Ministry of Education to implement the Decentralizing Funding to Schools Project, which include student stipends and schools grants program. The stipends program benefits 37,000 students in 2014-2015, more than 100,000 in 2015-2016 and more than 150,000 students in 2016-2017. The school grants program helped improve flow and use of resources as well as community participation and oversight.
In support of Myanmar’s aspiration for Universal Health Coverage, the World Bank has mobilized financing, global expertise, and knowledge services to support strengthening of Myanmar’s health system, namely health financing, with the aim of improving coverage of essential health services and increasing financial risk protection. The first type of support is the Essential Health Services Access Project, with the objective of increasing access to essential services, especially for pregnant women, newborns and children. This is a nation-wide project with expected benefits to reach within four years 4 million pregnant women and young children in all 330 townships in 14 states and regions.
The World Bank is also supporting the National Electrification Project (NEP) which aims to provide 7.2 million households with electricity and achieve universal access to electricity by 2030. The NEP calls for investments of $5.8 billion over the next 15 years to expand national and off-grid areas. To support NEP implementation, the World Bank approved $400 million IDA loan in late 2015 to Myanmar. With IDA funds, 6.2 million people, 23,000 public facilities (health clinics, schools, and religious and other community buildings) and 151,000 public street lights will be connected.
Under the Agricultural Development Support Project, the World Bank is providing support to the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Irrigation to increase incomes of 120,000 farmers through improvement and rehabilitation of 35,000 hectares of existing irrigation systems, better management of land and water resources, and the delivery of agricultural services by 2022. IDA provided $100 million in April 2015 to achieve the project objectives in Bago, Nay Pyi Taw, Mandalay, and Sagaing Regions of Myanmar.
The WBG is contributing to informed debate and decision-making on development policy within a rapidly changing Myanmar by periodically bringing most recent economic data and analysis on development issues to government policy makers, think tanks, civil society and citizens. The WBG also release Myanmar Economic Monitors which look at economic developments and reforms twice a year.
The WBG is also undertaking analytical and diagnostic works including agriculture, energy, poverty assessment, trade and nutrition. The WBG has released a number of studies including Myanmar’s first ever Public Expenditure Review which provides options to align Union Budget policies to development priorities, Qualitative Social and Economic Monitoring on changes in rural life and livelihoods, the Investment Climate Assessment which reviews the main bottlenecks to private investment and job creation in Myanmar, and Post-Disaster Needs Assessments (PDNA) to highlight the extent of damage to the economy affected by severe, widespread floods and landslides occurred in July and August 2015 in Myanmar.
The WBG prepared six policy notes presenting policy options to increase shared prosperity in Myanmar and help inform the design of economic and social programs of the new administration. Through extensive dissemination efforts, the WBG has helped inform policy and strategy on issues such as expanding access to social services, reducing rural poverty, enhancing competiveness of the private sector, promoting an inclusive financial sector, and ensuring sustainable energy and enhanced public sector accountability.
IFC, the private sector development arm of the WBG, helps government implement reforms that improve the business environment and encourage and retain investment in infrastructure, financial sector and in sectors which create jobs. IFC has focused on improving the investment climate in Myanmar, both through regulatory reforms (e.g. draft new Investment Law, Myanmar Business Forum, Doing Business reform, Credit Bureau, Secured Transactions Reform, Corporate Governance, and Environment and Social Sustainability Performance Standards) and support for infrastructure, including power, telecom, and ports.
IFC has invested more than $410 million in the information, transportation, tourism, construction, agro-business, agro-business, retail, and finance sectors in Myanmar. It is also supporting Myanmar’s energy sector. IFC has successfully grown its financial markets program by investing in two local banks, Yoma Bank and Myanmar Oriental Bank, and two MFIs, Acleda and Fullerton, with work in progress to expand more its portfolio in the micro-finance sector. IFC’s engagement with local banks and microfinance institutions will help expand access to critical finance for individuals and micro, small, and medium enterprises. IFC Treasury team is finalizing the agreement with the local bank to establish swap facility in order to provide local currency lending.