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FEATURE STORYFebruary 22, 2022

Opening World Bank Group Operations to Legislators

The World Bank


  • An inaugural live learning seminar for parliamentarians provided legislators representing every region of the globe a deeper understanding of the World Bank Group’s structure, mandate, operations, results, and current priorities.
  • Parliamentarians are important stakeholders to the World Bank Group who represent citizen voices in development projects and contribute to improved results on the ground.
  • The successful pilot event will help shape future, more targeted learning experiences.

February 22, 2022 – The World Bank Group offered a first-of-its-kind “Introduction to World Bank Group Operations” seminar for parliamentarians alongside the Parliamentary Network on the World Bank and IMF on February 22, 2022.

Some 80 legislators representing every region of the globe connected to gain a deeper understanding of the World Bank Group’s structure, mandate, operations, results, and current priorities. Through direct dialogue with high-level spokespeople from across the organization, including the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the International Development Association (IDA), and the Operations Policy and Country Services Unit of the Bank, parliamentarians also learned about their important roles in funding, shaping, and scrutinizing World Bank Group operations.

Prior to the technical presentations, Naysán Sahba, Manager, Global Engagement and Partnerships, World Bank, emphasized the essential role of parliamentarians in enacting laws, approving budgets and loans, shaping and reviewing development policies, and holding their governments accountable. As elected representatives, he noted that parliamentarians are important voices in tailoring World Bank Group programs to meet citizens’ needs. He also thanked lawmakers for their invaluable part in securing an historic $93 billion for the recent IDA20 replenishment to help low-income countries respond to the COVID-19 crisis and build a greener, more resilient, and inclusive future.

Honorable Ricardo Leite MD, MP, Portugal and Vice Chair of the Parliamentary Network encouraged attendees to join and participate in their many joint activities with the World Bank Group, such as the upcoming Global Parliamentary Forum and future field visits. The Parliamentary Network is an independent NGO that strives to increase transparency and accountability in the development cooperation process, pushing policy in the right direction, notably in relation to health during COVID-19.

The World Bank

During an interactive Q&A session moderated by Mercy Niwe, Head of Stakeholder Engagement at the World Bank, parliamentarians asked detailed questions about results measurement in projects and on a national basis. They were keen to hear how they could engage with the World Bank Group at the global, regional and national levels, including by creating country chapters of the Parliamentary Network. Discussions are already underway to assist interested MPs in launching new chapters.

For the World Bank Group, this pilot session was also an opportunity to gauge interest in such events and enhance them in the future, to reinforce relations with parliamentarians for more meaningful and sustainable development results.


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