After almost a year of crisis, Yemen has embarked on a political transition based on an agreement brokered by the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) in November 2011. Yemen started a 565-member National Dialogue process in March 2013, which concluded in January 2014 with the decision to transform Yemen into a Federal State.
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IDA Grant: US $50.0 million equivalent Project ID: P148366Project Description: The objectives of the project are to assist Yemen with providing needed infrastructure to improve access to b... Show More +asic public services and create short term employment. Show Less -
SANA’A, July 3, 2014 – The World Bank’s Board of Directors today approved a US$50 million grant for the expansion of a public works program in Yemen that has proved effective in answering the need for... Show More + more economic opportunities and improved access to basic services. The additional financing comes at the request of the government of Yemen, to increase the geographic scope of the project and bring the benefits of job creation and better education, health and sanitation services to more Yemenis.The existing Labor Intensive Public Works Project, which began in 2012 with an initial grant of US$61 million, is expected to benefit about 1.3 million people with 382 sub-projects. By expanding it, the government hopes to reach another 1.3 million. The additional grant will fund 313 new sub-projects to be spread across all six of Yemen’s newly established regions.“With more sub-projects, poor communities in remote, rural areas of Yemen will reap the benefits of better service and infrastructure and more jobs,” said Wael Zakout, World Bank Country Manager for Yemen. “The scaled-up project will also support decentralization efforts with its national presence and by providing training and capacity building for local municipalities.” The expanded project will continue to use local contractors, and employ people from local communities, to deliver labor-intensive, small-scale, demand-driven sub-projects to sparsely populated rural settlements, as well as to poor communities in urban areas. While individuals will benefit from short-term jobs and vocational training, their work will in turn benefit the entire community through the creation of new education and health related infrastructure, improved sewage and water services and paved roads.The additional grant comes with a sharper focus on the inclusion of women and increased participation of citizens. Women engineers will be contracted for the design and preparation of sub-projects, and women will also be hired for the short-term jobs associated with project implementation. Mechanisms will be established for filing complaints and an extensive process of gathering citizen feedback on the results of sub-projects will be initiated.By early this year, around 165,000 people had more access to primary health care as a result of the first phase of the Public Works Project, and roughly the same number had better access to schools. Almost 100,000 people had easier access to drinking water or sanitation. Show Less -
ARADO is the training arm of the Arab League, and the Network of Experts is tapping into it to facilitate a regional training program that builds on existing resources in the various countries, addres... Show More +ses common challenges, and capitalizes on existing strengths.“When it comes to the effectiveness of public procurement,” said MENA Regional Procurement Manager, Yolanda Tayler, “it is striking how similar many of the challenges that MENA countries face are, and how little has been done in the past to take advantage of cross-border training programs.”Capacity building programs often have problems in common. These include a lack of sufficient funding, the lack of an assessment of existing skills and competencies—and gaps—and the frequent exodus of highly-qualified staff to other government positions or to private companies offering higher pay.Many countries have taken a highly fragmented approach to capacity building, and have not yet been able to build a body of knowledge within the country. Other shared challenges include the lack of qualified trainers and specialized training institutes, the quality and coverage of the training programs, and the limited knowledge or dissemination of modern procurement tools like e-procurement.The Network of Experts’ regional capacity building program seeks to address some of these shared challenges, following the model of the Sharjah event on SMEs. Trainers from nine MENA countries attended it—Morocco, Tunisia, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Djibouti, Egypt, Yemen, and the Palestinian Territories.A regional capacity building strategy for public procurement will be developed for training materials in Arabic and French for the ‘training of trainers’ programs, and for building partnerships with training institutions. Subsequent country-level training sessions will leverage each country’s existing institutions, infrastructure and expertise, while putting World Bank President Jim Yong Kim’s science of delivery methodology to good use to make sure that everyone knows how to implement the training programs. In the longer term, there could be a regional certification program for procurement professionals. Some countries have already made ground-breaking advances in terms of the coordination between their public procurement departments. Collaboration allows stakeholders to learn from the successes of others in the region. At the regional level, countries could coordinate to create economies of scale, taking advantage first of the resources and knowledge that already exist on the ground. Show Less -
In the January 2014 issue, entitled Growth slowdown heightens the need for reforms, we see that ongoing regional tensions, together with a challenging (albeit slightly improving) external environ... Show More +ment, have hit the economies of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region hard.PAST ISSUESJuly 2013: Growth slowdown extends into 2013 While the focus has been on the recent change in government in Egypt, five countries in the Middle East and North Africa Region, including Egypt, Tunisia, Lebanon, Jordan and Iran are facing a growth slowdown, rising fiscal deficits and debt, and high unemployment and inflation. Show Less -