Nigeria makes World Bank’s top-three IDA debtors’ list
... CREDIT SUPPORT OF $2.586BN CONFIRMS POVERTY LEVEL … trails bthiopia, Bangladesh
The World Bank says it is helping Nigeria to fight extreme poverty and improve the living standards of her citizens with International Development Association (IDA) credits of about $2.586 billion (N790bn) as at end of 2018.
Nigeria is third in the list of IDA top country borrowers, the World Bank said in its annual report for 2018 available to Businessday. Nigeria trails behind Ethiopia, which is the first with IDA credit of $3.122 billion, and Bangladesh (second) with IDA credit of $2.991 billion.
IDA is one of the largest sources of assistance for the world’s 75 poorest countries, 39 of which are in Africa, and is the single-largest source of donor funds for basic social services in these countries.
Nigeria overtook India last year as the country with the largest number of people living in extreme poverty, according to report by the World Poverty Clock, which noted that extreme poverty in Nigeria was growing by six people every minute, the highest number in the world.
At the end of May 2018, the survey showed that Nigeria had an estimated 87 million people in extreme poverty, compared to India’s 73 million.
The International Development Association (IDA) is the part of the World Bank that helps the world’s poorest countries. Overseen by 173 shareholder nations, IDA aims to reduce poverty by providing loans (called “credits”) and grants for programmes that boost economic growth, reduce inequalities, and improve people’s living conditions.
Traditionally, IDA has been funded largely by contributions from high- and middle-income partner countries. Additional financing comes from transfers from International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) net income, grants from International Finance Corporation (IFC), and borrowers’ repayments of earlier IDA credits.
Other top country borrowers and their IDA credits as at fiscal year 2018 are Pakistan ($1.948bn); Kenya ($1.280bn); Côte d’ivoire ($987m); Tanzania ($955m); Uzbekistan ($740m); Nepal ($706m), and Uganda ($640m).
“In fiscal 2018, our combined commitments for the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) and the International Development Association (IDA) totalled more than $47 billion,” said Kristalina Georgieva, chief executive officer of IBRD and IDA. “But these impressive numbers stand for something much bigger. They represent our ability to confront the world’s toughest challenges and to step in when our clients need us the most.”
The World Bank Group’s risk officers monitor the global political and economic impacts that could affect the institution’s finances. In fiscal 2018, economic growth in advanced economies reaccelerated, while activity in developing countries also rebounded. Policy uncertainty in some advanced and larger developing economies continues to present an overarching risk, and there is a significant chance that economic activity could diverge from the forecast of continued strengthening of global activity, the World Bank said in the annual report, adding that “geopolitical tensions remain elevated, with potential impacts on financial market confidence and volatility”.
Every three years, the World Bank Group development partners meet to review IDA’S policies, assess its financial capacity, agree on the amount of financing for the next replenishment period, and commit to additional contributions of equity that are required to meet IDA’S objectives and development goals.
Going forward, IDA said it will continue to grow its borrowing programme to raise funds that complement donor contributions, enabling it to expand its life changing investments in the poorest countries.
L-R: Abiodun Dabiri, general manager, Lagos State Metropolitan Area Transport Authority (LAMATA); Ladi Lawanson, commissioner for transportation, and Akinwunmi Ambode, governor, Lagos State, during the governor’s inspection of the Oyingbo Bus Terminal, in Lagos, yesterday.