Other ESW Reports

226 items available

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This includes miscellaneous ESW types and pre-2003 ESW type reports that are subsequently completed and released.

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    Digitalizing SMEs to Boost Competitiveness
    (Washington, DC, 2022-10) World Bank
    While Malaysia’s digital economy had already been growing rapidly over the past decade, the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic has further accelerated this trend. In particular, increased access to digital platforms has enabled businesses of all sizes to mitigate the crisis’ adverse impacts. At the same time, the depth and breadth of small and medium enterprise (SME) digitalization has remained limited, suggesting a growing risk of digital divide in the country. This report analyzes opportunities and challenges for Malaysian SMEs to better leverage digital tools and platforms to increase their productivity and competitiveness. It is structured around three complementary analytical pillars: (i) a digital business landscape diagnostic presenting the extent of digitalization and use of digital platforms among SMEs in traditional sectors, and the constraints that SMEs still face to digitalize; (ii) an institutional and policy mapping reviewing the government of Malaysia’s efforts to foster SME digitalization; and (iii) a digital market regulations assessment evaluating the adequacy of Malaysia’s digital regulatory environment, to identify shortcomings that may undermine SMEs’ capacity to access and benefit from the use of digital platforms. The analysis has been undertaken with a view to inform the implementation of the Malaysia Digital Blueprint (MyDIGITAL).
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    COVID-19 in Solomon Islands - Economic and Social Impacts: Insights from the January-February 2022 Round of High Frequency Phone Surveys
    (Washington, DC, 2022-07) World Bank
    This report focuses on the socio-economic impacts of Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Solomon Islands. The fourth round of the high frequency phone survey (HFPS) interviewed 2,671 households in January-February 2022 on the socio-economic impacts of Coronavirus (COVID-19), including employment and income, community trust and security and COVID-19 vaccination. The January-February 2022 round occurred at the onset of the first wave of COVID-19.
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    Diálogos Territoriales de Futuro
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2022-06-14) World Bank
    Este documento busca informar el proceso de descentralización de las políticas de fomento productivo en Chile, para ayudar a crear consensos y generar una hoja de ruta. Para ello, se llevaron a cabo los Diálogos Territoriales del Futuro en las 16 regiones de noviembre 2021 a enero 2022. Estos talleres convocaron a más de 200 representantes del Ministerio de Economía, Fomento y Turismo, servicios públicos, y los principales actores del desarrollo económico regional para discutir los desafíos de la descentralización de las políticas de fomento productivo y proponer soluciones, con el fin de desarrollar una hoja de ruta que cree consenso e impulse la descentralización en Chile. Los Diálogos Territoriales del Futuro, que constituyen el primer paso de un largo camino, fueron muy bien recibidos por todos los participantes, especialmente en las regiones, ayudando a generar confianzas entre los diferentes stakeholders y planteando los desafíos y dudas sobre el proceso.
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    Georgia Power Sector: Maximizing Finance for Development
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2022-05) Energy Sector Management Assistance Program
    Over the past two decades, the leveraging of private-sector expertise and commercial capital has helped turn around Georgia’s power sector from near-complete operational and financial collapse to a sector that provides secure, affordable, and reliable electricity services to Georgian customers. However, the government may not be able to sustain the current model of financing of electricity sector investments given the expected public debt and fiscal impacts. This study develops recommendations for optimizing available financing for electricity generation and transmission investments while limiting the impacts on public finance needs and fiscal risks. To this end, the study presents: (i) a summary of the historical and required investment needs in the power generation and transmission segments; (ii) a review of the constraints to mobilizing private and commercial financing with limited impact on fiscal risks; and (iii) the development of a reform roadmap to enable sustainable financing of investments in electricity generation and transmission. The objectives of this study are to: (a) identify the obstacles to optimizing available financing for power generation and transmission investments while limiting the impacts on the public finances, and (b) present recommendations to overcoming those obstacles.
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    Testing the Resilience of the Turkish Cypriot Economy: A Macroeconomic Monitoring Note - Special Issue : Enhancing Competitiveness and Promoting Economic Integration
    (World Bank, Washington DC, 2022-03) World Bank
    The Turkish Cypriot economy (TCe) has struggled to recover since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in early 2020. With a contraction of 16.2 percent in GDP in 2020, when the COVID-19 pandemic first took hold, the TCe experienced the most severe recession in its history, and the most severe recession among the economies of Europe. Moreover, just as other economies were beginning to recover, in 2021 the TCe underwent a phase of exceptional political uncertainty and numerous exogenous shocks, testing its resilience. With the emergence of new variants of the virus, the COVID-19 pandemic continued to adversely impact the TCe throughout 2021, with cases reaching a new peak at the end of 2021 despite the Turkish Cypriot (TC) administration’s efforts to prevent the spread of the virus, together with its support for the health system, households, and companies. Furthermore, a new record low in average precipitation in 2021, a series of earthquakes at the beginning of 2022, and weak energy security, with a recent series of power outages experienced across the island, have all revealed the intrinsic vulnerabilities of the island to climate change and natural disasters. Building a competitive private sector would require reforming business regulations and procedures that are under the mandate of the TC administration, and that should be aligned with international best practices and the EU Acquis, irrespective of the broader context of the political economy. Special attention should be devoted to the regulation concerning imports and GL trade. Pre-permits and licenses imposed by the TC administration on imports, on top of regulatory uncertainty and other cumbersome procedures, contribute to increasing prices, penalizing consumers, and eroding domestic competitiveness. A dialogue framework between GC and TC private sectors could be established to support solutions to the long-standing constraints that have been impeding business cooperation across the GL, for the benefit of all Cypriots.
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    Ecological Compensation in China: Trends and Opportunities for Incentive-Based Policies Towards a Greener China
    (Washington, DC, 2022-02-11) World Bank
    China is a global leader in the use of ecological compensation (“eco-compensation”)—fiscal transfers for environmental and natural resources management. China is one of the most fiscally decentralized countries in the world, with 85 percent of government spending occurring at subnational levels. In this context, fiscal transfers are one of the national government’s most important tools for motivating and aligning environmental actions across levels of government and jurisdictional boundaries. The government has signaled a strong interest in expanding eco-compensation as part of reforms towards a higher quality greener growth model. Drawing on a unique dataset built from records across government, academia, and news media, this report traces the rise of eco-compensation, explores its current use, provides recommendations to strengthen impacts, and distills broad lessons from China for similar policies globally.
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    Saudi Arabia's Digital and Distance Education: Experiences from the COVID-19 Pandemic and Opportunities for Educational Improvement
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2022-02-03) Boni, Anna ; Gregory, Laura
    Faced with the crisis of the Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic in March 2020, Saudi Arabia embarked on a journey to adapt the way in which schooling operated, enabling a continued education for children across the country. This was a unique journey, and one that will have lasting impacts on education in Saudi Arabia. The World Bank studied this journey in detail over the 2020-21 school year, as the pandemic was underway. This report compiles the results of this study and provides a comprehensive review of the experiences of digital and distance education in Saudi Arabia, along with an analysis of opportunities for future educational improvement. The study aimed to answer three main questions. Firstly, how well did Saudi Arabia provide for, and achieve, continued education of kindergarten to grade 12 (K-12) students during the COVID-19 pandemic Secondly, what were the strengths of Saudi Arabia’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic in K-12 education And finally, what are the opportunities for educational improvement following the digital and distance education experience To answer these questions, a variety of data gathering instruments were designed and implemented by the World Bank team. The data sources included focus groups; surveys of nationally representative groups of school principals, teachers, students, parents, and supervisors; virtual classroom observations; and interviews with key personnel. Analyses of these data informed the conclusions and recommendations presented in this report, which were reviewed by global experts in the fields of education and education technologies.
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    Assessing Financial Risks from Physical Climate Shocks: A Framework for Scenario Generation
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2022-02-01) Ranger, Nicola Ann ; Mahul, Olivier ; Monasterolo, Irene
    Climate change has become a main concern of ministries of finance, central banks, and financial regulators. In response, a suite of scenarios and tools have been developed tthe potential scale of climate risks and underprice investments in resilience. This is particularly important for emerging markets and developing economies where exposure to physical climate risks is already high and is expected to further increase with climate change. The paper identifies five areas, or risk drivers, that make a material contribution to physical climate risks to the financial sector and that are not consistently included in current scenarios and tools: (1) extreme weather events; (2) uncertainties in climate models; (3) compound scenarios; (4) indirect economic impacts of shocks; and (5) feedback between the real economy and the financial sector. We derive a framework for generating scenarios to assess acute physical climate-related financial risks, which is inspired by the “Realistic Disaster Scenarios” that are used in risk management and supervision in the insurance sector. The framework is illustrated through an application of the EIRIN macroeconomic model. This framework aims to complement recent work by the Network of Central Banks and Supervisors for Greening the Financial System (NGFS) and the Financial Stability Board (FSB) to inform ministries of finance, central banks, financial regulators, and financial institutions on climate financial risk assessments, both for micro- and macroprudential risk management, and to incorporate climate risks into wider financial decision making and disclosures.o assess the financial risks from physical climate shocks (for example, hurricanes, droughts, wildfires, flooding). However, those scenarios do not fully capture such shocks, which could lead financial institutions to underestimate.
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    Inclusive Approaches to Disaster Risk Management: A Qualitative Review
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2022-02) World Bank
    This report presents a qualitative review of inclusive approaches to disaster risk management (DRM)—a part of the first stocktaking exercise that the Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR) conducts to assess lessons learned and generate knowledge to help mainstream inclusive approaches and strategies across GFDRR activities. The findings are based on a literature review, analysis of portfolio data, and internal consultations with World Bank task team leaders of GFDRR-funded activities. The reviewed literature includes GFDRR project documentation and knowledge products, World Bank operational documents and research findings, and relevant publications from other scholars and organizations. The stocktaking exercise emphasizes gender, disability-inclusive DRM, citizen engagement, and community participation. It will help create a framework for GFDRR engagement on inclusive DRM and inform development of an inclusive DRM work plan for implementation beginning in fiscal year 2022. As such, GFDRR’s work in these areas reflects its commitment to the World Bank Group’s Gender Strategy 2016–2023 (World Bank Group 2015), the Disability Inclusion and Accountability Framework (World Bank 2018), and the Strategic Framework for Mainstreaming Citizen Engagement in World Bank Group Operations.
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    Accelerating Paraguay’s International Integration through Enhanced Trade, Investment and Competition Policies
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2022-02) World Bank
    This report seeks to inform the policy dialogue on how to accelerate Paraguay’s international economic integration and in turn its medium- and long-term growth prospects. It benchmarks Paraguay’s global integration; analyzes trade, investment and competition policies and the quality of related institutions; and provides recommendations for strengthening them and accelerating the country’s global connection. Chapter 2 benchmarks Paraguay’s trade outcomes along several dimensions, including export diversification, quality upgrading and export survival, and Chapter 3 follows with an analysis of how trade policies and the quality of the institutional framework are affecting trade performance and identifies opportunities for improvements. It also estimates the impact of the MERCOSUR-European Union (EU) Free Trade Agreement on Paraguay. Chapter 4 focuses on FDI patterns and the strengths and shortcomings of the supporting FDI policy framework to help integrate in regional and global value chains. Chapter 5 examines competition challenges in Paraguay’s markets that could be affecting trade and FDI attraction and provides recommendations for strengthening competition policies and institutions. The preparation of this report has benefitted from the analysis of multiple data sources as well as extensive consultations with stakeholders from the private and public sectors.