Online Media Briefing Center (OMBC) news for accredited journalists
It is my great pleasure to be here at the UN 2023 Water Conference. Water is the lifeblood of society. We need water for a thriving economy that can run farms, businesses, and factories. We need water for sustainable development—to produce food and deliver low-carbon growth. And we need clean water for healthy children and adults to realize their potential as productive members of society. But today, over 2.3 billion people lack safe drinking water. Global economic cost of water insecurity is nearly $500 billion per year. Our research shows that poor water quality can reduce economic growth by as much as a third.
World Bank Group President David Malpass today announced the creation of a new Vice Presidency for Ethics and Internal Justice to reinforce the Bank Group’s culture, promote corporate values, and strengthen the institution’s Ethics and Internal Justice function to better serve staff. Malpass announced that Lisa Rosen, currently Chief Compliance Officer for the Bank of England, has been chosen to fill this new role.
Image provided by the Bank of England.
The global pace of reforms toward equal treatment of women under the law has slumped to a 20-year low, constituting a potential impediment to economic growth at a critical time for the global economy, a new World Bank report shows.
The Board of Executive Directors of the World Bank Group met today under the Chairship of its Dean, Mr. Koen Davidse, to discuss the selection process for the next President of the World Bank Group, following the announcement by Mr. David Malpass on February 15, 2023 that he will be stepping down from his position by June 30, 2023.
Syria’s real GDP is expected to contract by 5.5% in 2023 following the February 6 and February 20 earthquakes that hit the Northern and Western parts of the country, according to a new World Bank damage assessment released today. Economic growth may contract further if reconstruction progress is slower than expected, given limited public resources, weak private investment, and limited humanitarian assistance reaching the affected areas.
Domestic food price inflation remains high around the world. Information from the latest month between October 2022 and February 2023 for which food price inflation data are available shows high inflation in almost all low- and middle-income countries, with inflation levels above 5% in 94.1% of low-income countries, 86% of lower-middle-income countries, and 87.0% of upper-middle-income countries and many experiencing double-digit inflation. In addition, about 87.3% of high-income countries are experiencing high food price inflation. The countries affected most are in Africa, North America, Latin America, South Asia, Europe, and Central Asia.
Global growth is slowing sharply in the face of elevated inflation, higher interest rates, reduced investment, and disruptions caused by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, according to the World Bank’s latest Global Economic Prospects report.
The poorest countries eligible to borrow from the World Bank’s IDA now spend over a tenth of their export revenues to service their long-term public and publicly guaranteed external debt—the highest proportion since 2000.