World Bank has committed over $2b in Myanmar as of June

The World Bank is currently supporting 43 active projects in Myanmar, Cambodia and Laos, with commitments of over US$2.7 billion as of June, according to the World Bank’s press statement.

Myanmar accounts for over half of the total commitment in the three countries. 13 projects and over $2 billion are in Myanmar, with the remaining 12 projects and $243 million in Cambodia, and 18 projects with $437 million in Laos.

However, the details of the World Bank’s contribution to 24 Myanmar projects have not been revealed.

The World Bank also announced its appointment of Ellen Goldstein as its new director for Myanmar, Cambodia and Laos. In this position, she is responsible for strengthening the partnership with client countries while deepening the dialogue on economic reforms aimed at ending extreme poverty and promoting shared prosperity.

“For the first time, the World Bank is placing a director in Yangon, reflecting the deepening of its partnership with Myanmar, as the country continues its historic transition toward a more market-oriented economy and toward greater regional and global integration,” it said.

In this position, she is responsible for strengthening the partnership with client countries while deepening the dialogue on economic reforms aimed at eliminating extreme poverty and promoting shared prosperity.

Ms Goldstein has recently served as director for the Western Balkans in the Europe and Central Asia Region, based in Vienna. Prior to her posting in Europe, she served as director for Bangladesh and Nepal, based in Dhaka.

“Most recently, these three countries [Myanmar, Cambodia and Laos] have seen the fastest economic growth in East Asia.

“Through our partnership strategy in each country, the World Bank will continue to support inclusive growth that benefits the poor,” Ms Goldstein said.

The World Bank and Myanmar government have agreed to a two-year extension of the Country Partnership Framework (CPF) with up to US$1.2 billion in financing, according to a press statement from the World Bank on June 23. The focus would be on rural growth, social services, health care and job creation.

The $1.2 billion in financing will from The International Development Association (IDA), along with technical assistance and advisory services from the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA).

The CPF extension will help Myanmar strengthen its programs and reforms which will promote growth in rural areas, invest in basic social services. This will include the provision of better health, nutrition and education facilities and building infrastructures, which will in turn create more and better employment opportunities in the next two years.

Kyaw Soe Lynn, communications officer at the World Bank, told The Myanmar Times that there will be three key areas for the extended partnership framework: rural poverty reduction, institutions and human capital as well as private sector.

Source : Myanmar Times

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