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PRESS RELEASE March 8, 2019

World Bank Bond Highlights Importance of Investing in Women through Agriculture

Washington, D.C, March 8, 2019—In commemoration of International Women’s Day, the World Bank (International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, IBRD rated Aaa/AAA) today priced a Sustainable Development Bond to raise awareness for the importance of investing in women’s empowerment in rural areas. The bond highlights Sustainable Development Goals 1, 2 and 5 to achieve zero poverty, zero hunger, and gender equality.

The bond—an Indonesian rupiah-denominated, IDR 500 billion, 5-year bond was placed with investors committed to highlighting the importance of the theme, with Macquarie Investment Management as the lead investor. HSBC is the lead manager for this transaction.

The bond brings the World Bank’s total issuance of bonds that raise awareness for gender equality to US$840 million. The World Bank has also issued US$2 billion in bonds to highlight efforts that support women and children’s health.

Women and girls have a unique role to play as drivers of growth and progress and powerful agents of change. Globally, women are accorded only three-quarters of the legal rights that men enjoy according to a new index recently released by the World Bank, constraining their ability to get jobs or start businesses and make economic decisions that are best for them and their families. These difficulties are compounded for rural women, who often lack access to both information and finance.

The World Bank works with public- and private-sector partners to close gender gaps globally for lasting impact in tackling poverty and driving sustainable economic growth that benefits all. For example, World Bank research studies the role of empowerment for rural women in agriculture. In Côte d’Ivoire, a $200 million World Bank loan will help increase cashew productivity, one of the main sources of smallholders’ income and the center-piece of the country’s farming systems impacting two million people.  

World Bank Vice President & Treasurer Jingdong Hua said: “We are extremely pleased with the success of this transaction, which caps a weeklong to highlight the importance of investing in women to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. The strong investor response reflects growing demand for safe, liquid bonds that connect with social purpose. We appreciate the support we receive from investors as we continue to raise awareness about the importance of investing in women’s empowerment. By working together, we can ensure a better future for all.”

“Supporting this deal enables us to boost the already outstanding sustainability standards in our supranational emerging market local currency bond portfolios and at the same time maximize the impact of our investment and raise awareness for rural women’s empowerment. We highly welcome the bond issue and look forward to working together with the World Bank in similar theme deals in the future,” said Gyula Toth, Senior PM at Macquarie Investment Management.

“By focusing on rural women's empowerment on International Women's Day, the World Bank is expanding the focus on gender in sustainable finance to include the need to improve income generation and job security for female farmers. We’re delighted to work with the World Bank to support the livelihoods of rural women through this issuance,” said Farnam Bidgoli, Head Sustainable Bonds DCM EMEA, HSBC.

World Bank Bonds Highlight Women’s Health and Empowerment

The World Bank issues around US$50 billion annually in bonds for sustainable development. The Sustainable Development Bond format allows the World Bank to obtain cost effective funding while simultaneously engaging with investors and market participants to raise awareness for a specific development challenge, linking it to the Sustainable Development Goals and highlighting the entire developmental mandate of the World Bank. The following are the World Bank bonds supporting gender equality and women and children’s health.

About the World Bank

The World Bank (International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, IBRD), rated Aaa/AAA (Moody’s/S&P), is an international organization. Created in 1944, it is the original member of the World Bank Group and operates as a global development cooperative owned by 189 nations.

The World Bank provides loans, guarantees, risk management products, and advisory services to middle-income and other creditworthy countries to support the Sustainable Development Goals and to end extreme poverty and promote shared prosperity. It also provides leadership to coordinate regional and global responses to development challenges.

The World Bank has been issuing sustainable development bonds in the international capital markets for over 70 years to fund programs and activities that achieve a positive impact. More information on World Bank bonds is available at


This press release is not an offer for sale of bonds of the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development ("IBRD"), also known in the capital markets as "World Bank". Any offering of the bonds will be made only by means of a prospectus containing detailed information that will made available through HSBC, and is subject to restrictions under the laws of several countries. Securities may not be offered or sold except in compliance with all such laws.