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FEATURE STORY

The World Bank in Moldova: 20 Years of Partnership

October 17, 2012

STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Poverty rate was reduced from 72% in 1999 to 22% in 2010.
  • A new social assistance system is now supporting the very poor and most vulnerable.
  • Moldova joined the World Trade Organization and is now on the way to further integration with Europe.

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Two decades of cooperation and joint efforts to boost prosperity, reduce poverty and improve the quality of life for Moldovans have translated in a broad range of support to the country, covering areas such as health, education, agriculture, energy, water supply and sanitation, e-governance, social protection, competitiveness and many others... Close Quotes

Abdoulaye Seck
World Bank's Country Manager for Moldova

Promoting Growth and Jobs

  • Over 400 companies have benefited from co-financing through a matching grants facility, including 206 that adopted international quality management standards and another 210 companies that used business development services.
  • In addition, more than 50 export-oriented companies benefited from access to affordable long-term financing for investment and working capital needs, through a credit line set up to ease the effects of the recent economic crisis.
  • Support to the regulatory framework reform over the last five years has helped reduce compliance costs for enterprises by 35%.
  • Support to rural development resulted in the creation of 1,700 new businesses in high-value agriculture, livestock, and small industries, creating 7,000 new jobs starting from 2007.
  • Over 400,000 farmers are benefiting from high quality services of the Rural Development Agency through the Rural Investment and Services Project.

Improving Education

  • 65 pre-school institutions were renovated, 600 received teaching materials 42% of the national total.
  • 6,000 managers and teaching staff benefited from training through the Global Partnership for Education (GPE) formerly known as the Education for All – Fast Track Initiative, an initiative focusing on early childhood development, implemented by the World Bank and UNICEF.
  • Support to improving in the quality and efficiency of education in the country resulted in over 1,176 schools receiving equity school grants and 300 schools receiving quality grants for students in poor rural schools.
  • Education activities have also resulted in the introduction of per-student financing in schools, a system where money follows the child which will ensure increased autonomy for schools and communities, transparency and predictability in resource allocation.
  • Other achievements include revisions of the lycee curricula, teacher training programs for 8,000 teachers, supporting participation in international assessments of student learning and the promotion of education planning and monitoring.

Increasing Access to Heating

  • Support to the energy sector has provided improved access to heating for over 27,000 teachers and students, over 1.2 million patients and hospital visitors and ensured heating throughout the winter season in over 250 buildings. For example, student attendance increased by 5% during winter as a result of the installation of central heating.

Building a Better Public Administration

  • The World Bank supported greater efficiency of the public sector through the ongoing Public Financial Management (PFM) Project and Public Administration Reform Project. The latter facilitated consolidation of the central public administration bodies around key policy areas.
  • With support from the World Bank, the Government of Moldova is rethinking the use of ICT as a tool for improved public services, greater transparency and efficiency and private sector growth.

Helping the Most Vulnerable

  • An estimated 18,000 pregnant women, lactating mothers and children under two received food aid packages and over 1,600 social institutions benefited from grant money offered through the International Development Association to mitigate the increases in food prices in the summer of 2008.
  • The Strengthening the Effectiveness of Social Safety Nets Project is helping over 50,000 poor households receive means-tested targeted social assistance as part of the Ajutor Social program.
  • Improving the efficiency of safety-net budgets and targeting the most vulnerable groups, especially in the aftermath of the economic crisis, is a key priority of the project.

Caring for the Environment

  • Over 2,300 tons of pesticides and capacitors containing persistent organic pollutants (POPs) have been destroyed. The World Bank has helped set up a national framework for control and elimination of POPs and has supported the creation of a regulatory system to oversee the management of POPs and other toxic chemicals and wastes.
  • To introduce and promote the recycling of agricultural waste, 11 biomass boilers were installed with World Bank support.
  • The Bank is helping the country design adaptation strategies for climate change and disaster risk mitigation to respond to Moldova’s vulnerability to natural disasters.

Improving the Quality of Health for Moldovans

  • Over 40 primary healthcare centers have been rehabilitated throughout the country, offering residents of rural communities improved access to health services. In addition, ongoing support is offered for the construction of a surgical annex of the National Republican Hospital.
  • The Ministry of Health embarked upon improved and evidence-based policy making through the institutionalization of National Health Accounts, development of policy studies, and a feasibility study for the oncology institute.
  • An automated social assistance information system is being developed for the Ministry of Labor, Social Protection and Family to maintain records of beneficiaries and persons requiring social services.
  • The World Bank supported the rehabilitation and equipping of animal and human virology labs, strengthened national capacity in diagnosis, surveillance and treatment of avian influenza and other infectious diseases.

Supporting Moldova’s Communities

  • The Social Investment Fund (MSIF) is one of Moldova’s greatest development successes in helping to empower poor communities and vulnerable populations to manage their development needs. About 932,000 people have benefited from MSIF subprojects since their inception in 1998.
  • During 2009-2011, additional financing in the amount of US$ 20 million has generated around 100,000 person-days of employment in poor rural areas of Moldova most hit by the global economic crisis.

A Knowledge Bank

  • The World Bank has been working closely with the central government, local authorities, thinktanks and academia to advance a comprehensive knowledge agenda in support of good governance and sustainable and inclusive growth.
  • A public expenditure database entitled BOOST and regular Public Expenditure Reviews are helping increase the efficiency of public spending. Procurement Reviews aim to strengthen government capacity and transparency in procurement, whilst Financial Sector Assessment Programs target improvements in the financial sector.