Other ESW Reports

276 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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  • Publication
    Lebanon : Economic and Social Impact Assessment of the Syrian Conflict
    (Washington, DC, 2013-09-20) World Bank
    To provide a solid basis to define its needs and frame its priorities in terms of the specific assistance it seeks from the international community as well as to inform its own domestic policy response, the Government of Lebanon (GoL) requested the World Bank to lead an Economic and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA) of the Syrian conflict on Lebanon. Upon an official request from the Prime Minister of Lebanon, through a letter addressed to the World Bank dated July 25, 2013, this assessment has been conducted under the leadership of the World Bank, in collaboration with the United Nation (UN), the European Union (EU), and the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The outcome is the present report, of which the accuracy, quality and suitability for further dissemination is the responsibility of the World Bank, with input from the above mentioned key partners.
  • Publication
    Linking Gender, Environment, and Poverty for Sustainable Development : A Synthesis Report on Ethiopia and Ghana
    (Washington, DC, 2012-01) World Bank
    Poverty, environment, social development, and gender are important cross-cutting themes of the World Bank and government investment programs, especially within the Sustainable Development Network (SDN). For developing sectoral strategies and programs, economic, environment and social assessments are undertaken, however, these are usually done separately, and most often gender issues are not included. This is a missed opportunity, because joint assessments can map the links between gender, environment, and poverty and help identify approaches that can accelerate the positive synergy and better social/gender, environment, and poverty outcomes; otherwise, the existing negative relationships may slow the development process, and can even lead to unintended results. A joint analysis will also reduce cost of project preparation. This study was undertaken to analyze the links between gender, environment, and poverty; identify approaches; and provide practical suggestions for fostering positive synergies for better outcomes. The analytical framework for this study draws on the World Bank's three pillars of sustainable development: social inclusion, economic growth and environmental sustainability, and from political ecology literature, which highlights how decision-making processes, power relationships, and social conditions influence environmental policies and development outcomes. The following four propositions derived from political ecology literature guide the analysis: i) socioeconomic marginalization and natural resource degradation are mutually reinforcing processes; ii) protected area conservation and external control of natural resources can disrupt household and community production and social organization; iii) competing environmental interests shape environmental change; and iv) collective action and resilience can help mitigate negative impacts. The study is based on in-depth analysis of two sub-Saharan African countries Ethiopia and Ghana. The research methodology was qualitative, and included a series of interrelated analyses: a political ecology literature review, country-specific reviews of literature and data sets, good-practice project case studies in both countries, and participatory appraisals of grassroots perceptions of gender-poverty-environment links. Study sites were selected to include the major agro ecological zones and rural livelihood systems in each country. National and sub regional participatory forums were conducted to 'ground truth' the findings and elicit policy and project recommendations. A seven-week online discussion explored the broader applicability of the framework and study findings.
  • Publication
    Practitioners' Toolkit for Agriculture Public Expenditure Analysis
    (World Bank, 2011-03) World Bank
    This toolkit for analyzing public expenditures in agriculture contributes to a broader effort to enhance the focus, quality, and appropriate scaling of public spending in the sector. More specifically, the toolkit has two goals: to provide checklists for practitioners conducting various kinds of agriculture public expenditure analyses, and to provide selected examples on aspects of the checklist to help guide analysis. The toolkit presents a diversity of approaches and describes experiences both positive and negative in conducting agricultural public spending analyses in different settings and with different objectives. It offers checklists of issues and options, rather than a minimum list of issues to be covered. Needs, existing work time, and budget constraints will likely drive the selection of the checklist topics to be covered in any given analysis of public expenditures. The toolkit is organized to facilitate this selectivity of topic, while maintaining a strategic perspective. The supporting examples draw on numerous analyses of public expenditures in agricultures.
  • Publication
    How Do We Improve Public Expenditure in Agriculture?
    (World Bank, 2011-03) World Bank
    This paper synthesizes lessons learned from the Department for International Development-World Bank (DFID-WB) partnership, to provide guidance on ways to improve the allocation and efficiency of public spending for agricultural growth and poverty reduction. It includes lessons on how to improve data quality, the composition and impact of spending, budget execution, and the integration of off-budget expenditures. The paper synthesizes recurring lessons that have emerged from the commissioned work, to highlight key challenges that still remain to improve the efficiency of public expenditure planning and implementation in the agriculture sector, as well as offering options for improvement. The paper is accompanied by a separate document, the Agricultural Public Expenditure Reviews (AgPER) toolkit, which is a practical guide for practitioners tasked with carrying out AgPERs in the future. The paper is structured around the Budget Cycle Framework (BCF), to facilitate the identification of entry points to improve expenditure outcomes.
  • Publication
    Brazil - Minas Gerais - World Bank Partnership : Building on a Strong Foundation and Leading to Next Steps
    (2007-06-06) World Bank
    This document, Minas Gerais World Bank partnership: building on a strong foundation and leading to next steps, points the direction for next steps and emphasizes the elements and principles of a possible follow-up operation to the Development Policy Loan (DPL) that completed disbursement in April 2007, recognizing that it was premature to discuss the specifics of such an operation during this exercise. These elements and principles would provide the incentives and motivations for the choice of focus sectors under a possible Bank operation with Minas Gerais. Lead actively by the Governor and Deputy Governor, the Minas authorities have clearly identified enhancing the living conditions of citizens in the state as the overall priority. Nevertheless, the Minas Gerais targets are ambitious and by international standards there is ample room for additional progress. The report points out that fiscal policies and public sector reforms in Minas Gerais could be expected to yield continued stronger than national average economic growth and progress in creating jobs. The focus of this Partnership document is mainly on the Plano Mineiro de Desenvolvimento Integrado (PMDI) 2007-2023 long-term development strategy with an emphasis on broadening reforms. In short, the sectoral assessments are at the heart of the Partnership dialogue and could be used as the foundation for future development of the relationship, especially in areas of technical assistance or future Bank operations with Minas Gerais.
  • Publication
    Nigeria - Competitiveness and Growth : Country Economic Memorandum, Volume 2. Main Report
    (Washington, DC, 2007-05) World Bank
    The theme of this report is Nigeria's competitiveness and growth. This report consequently focuses on constraints, opportunities and strategic choices associated with increasing productivity and growth of the Nigerian economy on a sustained basis. Its objective is not to present a "blueprint" for Nigeria's growth but rather to raise issues and provide some options for the consideration of policy makers and other Nigerian stakeholders. The report is structured in four main sections. The first section analyzes Nigeria's growth history, examines the recent growth pick up and assesses its sustainability. The second section analyses how the critical constraints to competitiveness and growth may be addressed. The third section discusses how trade -domestic and external - can be used more effectively to drive growth and poverty reduction. The final chapter provides policy conclusions and suggestions on what could be key elements of a growth agenda for Nigeria. The analysis in this report suggests the following key elements for a growth strategy for Nigeria: 1) Strengthening actions to tackle the most immediate constraints to the competitiveness of the economy presented by infrastructure and the business environment; 2) Using domestic trade more effectively to enhance productivity and competitiveness by strengthening their functioning, and building stronger linkages between the oil and non-oil sectors, and over time strengthening Nigeria's integration into global markets; 3) Ensuring that the poor can participate more fully in growth by placing urgent emphasis on (i) finding ways to give back some of the proceeds of oil windfall directly to Nigerians; (ii) raising agricultural productivity-including through enhanced technology; and (iii) encouraging the transition from informality to the formal sector; and 4) Building the human capital and technological base of the economy over the longer term.
  • Publication
    South Asia : Pension Schemes for the Formal Sector, Emerging Challenges and Opportunities for Reform
    (Washington, DC, 2005-01) World Bank
    For centuries informal arrangements such as intra-family transfers have been the primary source of old-age income support in South Asia. That remains true even today. Current patterns suggest that only around 1 in 10 of South Asia's half a billion workers will enter old age with a pension related to pre-retirement earnings. Pension schemes in South Asia cover small shares of the population, concentrated in the formal sector (table 1). Retirement income plans for the formal sector have for the most part performed poorly-both for their participants and for the economy. But while several countries in the region are exploring or already introducing reforms of civil service pension schemes, the performance of retirement income schemes available to the rest of the formal sector has received far less attention. The policy framework for most of these programs has barely changed since they were created, in some cases nearly half a century ago. Moreover, these schemes involve even more complex political economy issues, because governments have often used their funded (or partially funded) structures to address fiscal gaps. Now is a critical time to consider more broadly the problems affecting retirement income schemes for the formal sector. The two defined benefit programs in India and Pakistan, for example, have not yet matured. As time passes, future pension promises will become more deeply entrenched, making reform even more challenging. And as funded plans continue to grow, there is a risk of further misallocation of savings. Perhaps more important, there are encouraging signs of economic growth in the region and thus good possibilities for expanding the coverage of these programs. But even as a growing number of younger workers join the formal labor market and thus formal retirement schemes, urbanization is likely to weaken traditional informal arrangements for the elderly, including intra-family transfers. Strengthening retirement income schemes for the formal sector will help the region better prepare for the demographic change occurring over the next half century. This report seeks to provide a framework for improving the performance of pension schemes for the formal sector. After an introduction, Chapter 2 examines civil service pension schemes, chapter 3 focuses on mandatory private sector schemes, chapter 3 discusses the expansion of voluntary retirement savings arrangements, and chapter 5 is directed toward improving the business environment for retirement savings schemes. Chapter 6 presents conclusions.
  • Publication
    Indonesia : Selected Fiscal Issues in a New Era
    (Washington, DC, 2003-02-14) World Bank
    Despite the substantial progress in managing its fiscal challenges post-1997 financial crisis, Indonesia's risks to the budget have not disappeared, though the Government continues to be committed to fiscal consolidation. While debt sustainability is improving, the budget remains vulnerable to shocks, and, large non-discretionary spending (interest payments, transfers to the regions, personnel spending) still constrain the use of fiscal policy for macroeconomic stabilization, and social risk protection, and, as the fiscal situation improves, and decentralization proceeds, a rethinking of resource allocation becomes necessary. This report assesses Indonesia's progress in dealing with challenges that have altered the fiscal system since the crisis, and reviews options for fiscal consolidation, as well as sectoral issues in the new decentralized environment, including public expenditure management reforms. Suggestions include an increased revenue mobilization to make the budget more risk proof, and an improved tax administration, rather than streamlining the tax structure alone, while the Government's decision to eliminate the fuel subsidy remains critical for fiscal consolidation (which has little social implications). Moreover, the large interest payments burden incurred during the crisis, is crowding out development spending, and similarly, increased transfers to local governments are limiting discretionary spending (which could be accompanied by a decrease in central development spending in areas of regional responsibilities). A refinement of the budget management system is necessary, where the Finance Law would be instrumental in establishing accountability between the Executive, and Parliament.
  • Publication
    Paraguay : Financial Sector Review
    (Washington, DC, 2002-11-15) World Bank
    The report examines the highly vulnerable situation of the financial system in Paraguay, which suffered from a banking crisis in 1995-98, in addition to recent competitive devaluations of the Brazilian currency, the fall in cotton prices, as well as the regional economic slowdown. A major factor obscuring the reality of banking system solvency, is the practice of substituting needed loan provisions, with collaterals which underlie the loans. The main issue here is the relative liquidity absence, and delays inherent in unwinding such collateral, as well as its potential over-valuation, making it an ineffective substitute for cash provisions. The report further examines banking reforms, and restructuring of the state-owned banks, institutional and regulatory framework, and the safety net mechanisms and deposit insurance governing the system. It is suggested the reform of the pension system is crucial at this juncture, given that the current pay-as-you-go social security public pension system, is not fiscally sustainable from an actuarial, and benefits payment perspective, and, because the current system, even at its best, delivers very low returns on pension investment funds. Most importantly, for both the public, and private systems, the investment regime should permit heavy weighting in foreign hard currency securities.
  • Publication
    India's Transport Sector : The Challenges Ahead, Volume 2. Background papers
    (Washington, DC, 2002-05-10) World Bank
    India's transport system--especially surface transport--is seriously deficient, and its services are highly inefficient by international standards. The economic losses from congestion and poor roads are estimated at 120 to 300 billion rupees a year. This report takes a critical assessment of the key policy and institutional issues that continue to contribute to the poor performance of the transport sector in India. After an introduction, Chapter 2 provides an overview of rapid demand change and poor supply response, and the resulting adverse impacts on the Indian economy and society. Chapter 3 examines the causes of poor supply response by focusing on four major problems: unclear responsibilities, inadequate resource mobilization, poor asset management, and inadequate imposition of accountability. Chapter 4 reviews recent reforms and lessons learned. Chapter 5 proposes short to medium term actions for each of the main transport subsectors. Three factors make it particularly opportune time for India to expedite transport reform: 1) Initial reform momentum has been built up. 2) There is a growing consensus within India that transport should be managed as an economic sector. 3) There are many successful models for transport reform from around the world. The resistance to reform should be overcome considering the high cost of slow or inadequate action to the Indian economy and society.