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2020 Trust Fund Annual Report

Message from the Vice President

The World Bank Group (WBG) envisions a world in which no one lives in extreme poverty and everyone shares in its prosperity. Trust funds are a powerful tool for driving progress toward this vision. Trust funds provide timely financial resources that complement and scale up impact in WBG-funded operations. They contribute to the knowledge agenda and leverage the WBG’s convening power and global and local presence to contribute to country, regional, and global development. Trust funds help countries move the needle on their development agendas and take steps toward achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.

Furthermore, IBRD/IDA and IFC trust funds—with $13 billion of funds held in trust—provide predictable multi-year funding that helps deliver smarter and customizable development solutions for our clients and partners. From enhancing community access to digital financial services in Ghana to mobilizing investment in the Solomon Island’s first utility-scale hydropower facility to scaling up market-based clean cooking programs across the world, WBG trust funds complement Bank resources and empower innovations in projects and programs worldwide.

Similarly, the Bank’s portfolio of financial intermediary funds (FIFs)—with $24.2 billion of funds held in trust—enable the international community to provide a direct and coordinated response to global priorities. Their innovative financing and governance arrangements as well as their flexible designs allow funds to be raised from multiple sources, both sovereign and private.

We are living in a time marked by the unprecedented challenges of the global COVID-19 pandemic. As its health, social, and economic impacts have reverberated around the world, WBG trust funds and FIFs have contributed to and worked alongside our global response, bringing targeted support to vulnerable communities around the world and extending the Bank’s reach. Now more than ever, the trust fund reforms we have embarked upon will ensure a resilient future for the clients we serve.

The 2020 annual report highlights trends in the WBG trust fund portfolio over the past five years, including development partners’ contributions, disbursements, and work across key sectors and thematic areas, as well as a range of financial and management aspects of trust funds. In the past fiscal year, we have advanced the IBRD/IDA trust fund reform, moving toward fewer, larger Umbrella 2.0 Programs. The consolidation is improving strategic alignment, efficiency, and oversight, with the end goal of delivering transformative solutions for our client countries and providing the best value to development partners. In addition, the updated Management Framework for Partnership Programs and FIFs was adopted in 2019 to strengthen the selectivity criteria for these programs and ensure a more systematic approach to their life cycle management.

The successes recorded by WBG trust funds and FIFs can only be upheld with the support of partners and friends. We thank our development partners, implementing partners, and client countries for their engagement, collaboration, and dedication to a shared mission and vision. We look forward to working together in the critical months and years ahead.

Akihiko Nishio
Vice President
Development Finance, World Bank Group