The Japan Policy and Human Resources Development (PHRD) fund was the World Bank’s first programmatic trust fund, financed entirely by the Government of Japan to help boost the skills, know-how, and expertise of government institutions in developing countries so they can better address their key development challenges. The goal of PHRD is to give developing countries access to technical skills and global knowledge, allowing them to build human resources capacity to prepare programs and policies that promote economic growth and improve quality of life.
The PHRD fund continues to play a unique role in building the technical and institutional capacity needed to reduce poverty and grow the economies of grant-recipient developing countries. The heart of the PHRD is the effective partnership between the Government of Japan and the World Bank Group (WBG), which has yielded a collaborative approach and a strategy that allows for adaptability and flexibility as development needs change. This has enabled swift and dynamic programmatic adjustments so that PHRD remains relevant and results-focused—a tangible demonstration of Japan’s position on the world stage as the first-mover catalyst for pressing development issues.
The PHRD continues to maintain and strengthen its flexible approach to changing development challenges in agriculture and rural access to energy supply, monitoring and evaluation for better development results, Universal Health Coverage for all, and pandemic preparedness. PHRD’s outlook is consistent with the global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the WBG’s twin goals of ending extreme poverty and promoting shared prosperity. Going forward, the PHRD aims to promote strong, sustainable, and inclusive economic growth through these priority programs. Since its inception, the Government of Japan has contributed $3.4 billion to the PHRD fund in support of a portfolio of 4,500 operations that span more than 150 countries.
Structure and Governance:
The PHRD fund supports four main programs:
The PHRD Program Management and Administration Team in the World Bank’s Development Finance Vice Presidency (DFi) is responsible for the management of three of the four programs (Technical Assistance Universal Health Coverage Program, the Japan-World Bank Partnership Program, and the Japan Staff Grant Program), as well as for overall fund management and administration, including transfers from PHRD to other trust funded programs. The Scholarship Program (JJ/WBGSP) is managed by the World Bank's Development Economic Vice Presidency (DEC).
Contribution to other World Bank Group Programs:
The PHRD fund continues to be one of the largest trust fund programs that supports innovative global and multilateral WBG-managed programs designed to respond to newly emerging development challenges and to collaborate in rapid response initiatives. PHRD’s assistance, in the form of transfers to such programs, consists of partnerships to promote participation, knowledge sharing, and resource mobilization at the global or cross-country level.
Through this platform, cumulative contributions from inception to end of FY19 amount to US$835 million. Noteworthy contributions transferred to selected WBG Programs are outlined below:
PHRD Multilateral Contributions to Other WBG Programs
|Program||Contribution To Date ($m)|
|Japan-WBG for Mainstreaming Disaster Risk Management in Developing Countries (GFDRR)||$132.0|
|Global Concessional Financing Facility (GCFF) for the Middle East and North Africa (MENA)||$85.0|
|Pandemic Emergency Facility (PEF)||$50.0|
|Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR)||$49.18|
|Funding Japanese Nationals through the Donor Funded Staff Program (DFSP)||$43.05|
|Tokyo Development Learning Center (TDLC)||$35.0|
|Quality Infrastructure Investment Partnership (QIIP)||$30.0|
|Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN)||$22.0|
|Global Infrastructure Facility (GIF)||$15.0|
|Support to IAVI-Sendai Vector (SENDAI)||$14.0|
|Southeast Asia Disaster Risk Insurance Facility (SEADRIF)||$12.7|
|Global Financing Facility in Support of Every Woman Every Child (GFF)||$10.0|
The Policy and Human Resources Development (PHRD) fund continues to play a central role in enhancing the technical and institutional capacity of World Bank Group (WBG) member countries to tackle poverty and achieve economic growth. The PHRD fund has pushed the frontiers of knowledge to engage in challenging development issues. PHRD supported operations since inception have achieved significant results.