WASHINGTON, July 31, 2013 -- The World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors on Tuesday, July 30,endorsed a new Country Partnership Strategy (CPS) for Liberia for a four-year period. The CPS is aligned with Liberia’s Agenda for Transformation (AfT), built around five strategic pillars focusing on economic transformation, improving governance and public institutions, supporting peace, justice, security and rule of law, human development and cross cutting issues such as youth empowerment, employment, gender, labor and health.
The CPS will support selected elements of the AfT which will contribute to sustainable growth and poverty reduction, while at the same time address deep rooted causes of conflict and fragility in order to preserve past and future development gains. The Bank programming during the CPS period will focus on financing investments in infrastructure, especially energy and transport, along with building the human and institutional capacity necessary to deliver results in these sectors.
“Liberia’s Country Partnership Strategy reflects the Bank’s long-term commitment to help Liberia implement its Agenda for Transformation for economic growth and poverty reduction,” said Yusupha Crookes, World Bank Country Director for Liberia, Ghana and Sierra Leone. “The Bank’s involvement in Liberia will support public and private investments, access to reliable and affordable energy supply, and rehabilitation of transport infrastructure, which is crucial for achieving ambitious goals the Government of Liberia has set,” he said.
The CPS covers the Bank’s activities from 2013 to 2017 and the financing for implementation will build on the use of International Development Association (IDA) credits with strategic use of trust fund and other resources. The IDA indicative lending program for the CPS period is expected to be about US$308 million; the bulk of financing, in response to the Liberian Government’s request, will focus on investments in the energy and transport sectors.
“Partnerships have been and will remain essential in our work in Liberia and welook forward to continuing our fruitfuland close collaboration with the Government and development partners,”World Bank Liberia Country Manager Inguna Dobraja noted. “The Bank remains fully committed to supporting Liberia’s medium term development program – Agenda for Transformation and I look forward to the implementation of the new Country Partnership Strategy for the benefit of the Liberian people,” she said.
The Board discussions of the CPS take place at a time Liberia faces challenges in improving economic governance, reducing poverty and unemployment, which are important for sustainable growth, development and prosperity. The CPS was prepared in close collaboration with Government, civil society and development partners, including youth groups.
The current IDA portfolio comprises 17 projects, including 4 regional operations, for a total commitment of US$559.8m. Infrastructure accounts for almost 85 percent, followed by economic management (6 percent), agriculture and environment (5 percent) and social sectors (4 percent).
* 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.