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PRESS RELEASE

WB/Haiti: Country to Benefit from Improved Efficiency, Transparency in the Use of Public Resources

June 19, 2013



WASHINGTON, June 19, 2013 – Haiti’s key public institutions and service provision to the population will improve as a result of the implementation of a grant to increase efficiency and transparency in the use of public resources. The US$20 million grant from the International Development Association (IDA) approved by the World Bank Board of Directors supports key actions in the areas of public financial management, public procurement, and electricity sector performance.

"When citizens know how the Government spends public funds and see their lives improving as a consequence, when entrepreneurs see that public contracts are awarded on a transparent basis, trust in Government increases and so do investments in key economic sectors,” said Alexandre V. Abrantes, the World Bank’s Special Envoy to Haiti.

Specifically, the grant will:

  • Improve the public expenditure tracking system to enhance budget monitoring, and establish a Single Treasury Account to manage the flow of funds. A system that effectively tracks where public funds are spent and what are the outcomes will make government functioning more transparent and accountable, while enabling more efficient cash management.
  • Reinforce the institutional framework and capacity of effective public procurement. The grant will support the implementation and enforcement of the new Procurement Law, allowing for increased transparency and accountability in government institutions.
  • Strengthen electricity sector governance and enhance the national electricity company’s (Electricité d’Haïti) financial performance. This will be achieved by monitoring independent power producers’ production and paying only for metered generation. In turn, this will create space to invest in better distribution and metering infrastructure to provide reliable electricity services to existing customers, as well as expand access to new customers.

This grant builds on institutional foundations laid under previous operations, some of which were stalled or reversed by the earthquake. In 2010, a World Bank grant helped Haiti close its budget gap and support the government’s efforts to increase public sector transparency and accountability. This new funding reflects the Government’s shift in focus from emergency response towards building sound institutions and public spending controls for sustained economic reconstruction.

This grant is the third approved by the World Bank Board of Directors in the past month, after a Maternal and Child Health Project (US$70 million), and a Business Development and Investment Project (U$20 million).

About the World Bank/Haiti:

The World Bank Group supports government efforts to reduce the country’s vulnerability to natural disasters, reconstruct critical infrastructure, build human capital, promote decentralized and inclusive growth, and strengthen governance. Continuing technical and financial support in key areas, such as institutional consolidation, is of the outmost importance for the country's reconstruction and long-term development. With this in mind, the International Development Association (IDA) allocated US$500 million to Haiti for the 2012-2014 period, of which US$405 million have been committed to date in the form of investment projects and development policy grants.

Media Contacts
In Washington
Patricia da Camara
Tel : + 1 (202) 473 4019
pdacamara@worldbank.org
In Port-au-Prince
Berdine Edmond
Tel : + (509) 3106-4831
bedmond@worldbank.org


PRESS RELEASE NO:
2013/471/LAC

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