WASHINGTON, December 19, 2013 - The World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors today approved financing that will help Senegal deliver education, health and energy services, and boost economic growth through government reforms and changes to improve the business environment.
The Governance and Growth Support Credit (GGSC) supports the three pillars of the National Strategy for Economic and Social Development. It builds on the achievements of the first policy loan and deepens the reform agenda in three areas: (i) government accountability, (ii) service delivery, and (iii) private sector development. A major focus of today’s project is to strengthen the Government’s accountability systems and improve the efficiency and effectiveness of institutions that deliver high quality basic services, including reforms in higher education, accountability in hospitals and more reliable electricity supply. The US$30 million GGSC II is financed by a credit from the World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA)*.
“The Government of Senegal has taken steps to address its many challenges, such as a large fiscal deficit and food, energy and security crises,” said Vera Songwe, World Bank’s Country Director for Senegal. “It’s vital to continue these successes with activities that will help to accelerate growth, to improve access to social services, to mitigate vulnerabilities, and to foster good governance. This program we hope lays the groundwork for a focus on accelerated delivery and results over the coming years. ”
The GGSC II also supports the Government’s strategy to improve the investment climate by improving the reliability of electricity supply through the signature of a performance contract with Senelec, Senegal’s national electricity company. Other project activities, such as simplifying procedures and costs for tax payments and registering property, will also improve the investment climate.
“Senegal’s recent economic growth has been inadequate to make major progress in poverty reduction,” said Philip English, World Bank Task Team Leader. “The focus of today’s project − strengthening Government accountability and institutional capabilities, and improving the investment climate − will help to improve the effectiveness of public spending and attract investors, bringing services and jobs which improve the quality of life for the people of Senegal.”
* The World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA), established in 1960, helps the world’s poorest countries by providing loans (called “credits”) and grants for projects and programs that boost economic growth, reduce poverty, and improve poor people’s lives. IDA is one of the largest sources of assistance for the world’s 82 poorest countries, 40 of which are in Africa. Resources from IDA bring positive change for 2.5 billion people living on less than $2 a day. Since 1960, IDA has supported development work in 108 countries. Annual commitments have increased steadily and averaged about $15 billion over the last three years, with about 50 percent of commitments going to Africa.