Ulaanbaatar, March 12, 2007 – The World Bank Mongolia office has initiated the Mongolia Development Marketplace program based on the model of the World Bank’s global competitive grant program.
The Development Marketplace is the World Bank’s competitive grant program that provides financial support for the implementation of small, creative, effective and replicable projects. The program’s primary goal is to support creative and innovative solutions to the most pressing social and economic concerns of our time and, furthermore, to expand and replicate successful models.
The Global Development Reports-2004, issued annually by the World Bank discussed in detail the inability of poor and vulnerable groups to access quality basic social services such as education, health, water and sanitation. In Mongolia too, the quality and accessibility of basic social services in gher districts and peri-urban areas of Ulaanbaatar and other cities are not adequate.
Therefore, the first “Mongolia Development Marketplace-2007” program seeks to draw public attention to this issue and to support ideas that focus on increasing access to and quality of basic social services for the poor and vulnerable groups.
Arshad Sayed, the Representative of the World Bank in Mongolia, noted that “the Mongolia Development Marketplace shall provide Mongolian citizens, civil society organizations and others with an opportunity to implement their innovative and important ideas on the improvement of social services. Your idea can be simple, small or big. Most importantly, it should be implemented and brought into action.”
The innovative project proposals should address the following sub-topics:
Water and sanitation
Communications (using communication technology as tool to improve basic social services)
Civil society organizations, academics, researchers, students, soum and bagh governors and individuals may send their innovative ideas to compete in this program. The most innovative projects shall be provided with a financial support of 5,000-10,000 USD.
The applicants should develop their proposals using the grant application forms and submit them by May 31, 2007. The applicants whose proposals pass the first stage of the selection process shall be invited to the Mongolia Development Marketplace-2007 to be held in September, 2007. At this event, the winning proposals shall be identified. Moreover, the event shall provide opportunities for all participants to obtain necessary information and knowledge.
The Mongolia Development Marketplace-2007 is ensuring partnerships and cooperation at all levels and the World Bank is extending an open invitation to Mongolian governmental organizations, national NGOs, socially responsible corporations and individuals, and international organizations operating in Mongolia to participate in this program as partners.
Currently, the following organizations have joined the program as partners: the Office of the President, National Development Institute, Sustainable Livelihoods Support Program, German Technical Cooperation Agency, Swiss Development and Cooperation Agency, Open Forum Society, Mobicom Co. Ltd., Khan Bank, Khas Bank, Newcom Group, Information, Communication and Technology Office, Peace Corps Mongolia, SkyTel, Education Cooperation Association and city and aimag center libraries.
The implementation mechanism of the Mongolia Development Markeplace-2007 is simple, transparent and fair. In order to ensure broadest possible participation of organizations and individuals from Ulaanbaatar, other cities and aimags, information about the program and application forms shall be distributed at the following locations in addition to the media:
Mongolia DM web site: http://www.mongoliadm.mn
Development Information and Resource Center, OSF in Ulaanbaatar
Central libraries in aimags and cities
MobiCom and Skytel offices in aimags and cities
Khan and Xac banks’ offices in provinces and cities
SLP offices in aimags
USAID/Peace corps representatives in aimags
World Bank Ulaanbaatar Office
The World Bank has successfully organized the Development Marketplace competitive grant program since 1998. Since then, a total of 34 million USD have been granted to support over 800 successful projects globally and 13 million USD have been granted at national levels to support 750 innovative ideas in 51 counties.