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  • Publication
    World Bank Annual Report 2023: A New Era in Development
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2023-09-28) World Bank
    This annual report, which covers the period from July 1, 2022, to June 30, 2023, has been prepared by the Executive Directors of both the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) and the International Development Association (IDA)—collectively known as the World Bank—in accordance with the respective bylaws of the two institutions. Ajay Banga, President of the World Bank Group and Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors, has submitted this report, together with the accompanying administrative budgets and audited financial statements, to the Board of Governors.
  • Publication
    Tunisia - Systematic Country Diagnostic: Rebuilding Trust and Meeting Aspirations for a More Prosperous and Inclusive Tunisia
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2022-09-30) World Bank
    This Systematic Country Diagnostic (SCD) comes at critical moment in Tunisia. Since the 2011 revolution and the promulgation of a new constitution in 2014, Tunisia has been navigating a difficult political transition. While there have been gains in poverty reduction, public trust in government has declined sharply, and the economy has stalled. The COVID-19 pandemic and more recently the effects of the war in Ukraine also exacerbated stresses on the economy, the public finances, and public trust in government. Partly as result of these trends, recent political events since July 25 2021 have marked a break with the 2014 constitutional model, and created great uncertainty regarding the future direction of Tunisia’s transition. At the time of writing, it is still uncertain what form Tunisia’s new political and constitutional model will take in coming years. The Tunisia SCD takes a ten-year view of trends in Tunisia since 2011, drawing comparisons with other comparable countries, and suggesting possible future pathways. The World Bank Group undertakes SCDs as a diagnostic exercise to identify key challenges and opportunities to accelerate progress towards rebuilding trust and meeting citizen aspirations, and ultimately to contribute to the World Bank Group’s twin goals of ending absolute poverty and boosting shared prosperity in a sustainable manner. It is intended to become a reference point for consultations on priorities for World Bank Group country engagement. It is also intended as a contribution to the public debate about Tunisia’s path forward. This longer term perspective means that the Tunisia SCD does not place a heavy emphasis on recent events, but rather seeks to situate them in the broader context of trends in equitable growth, poverty reduction, and state capability.
  • Publication
    The World Bank in Iraq: Iraqi Ownership for Sustainability
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2005-06) Hadad-Zervos, Faris
    This paper examines the experiences of the World Bank Group in other countries, and explores its work in Iraq in light of its mandate and areas of impact. It outlines the objectives the Bank Group has sought to meet and the procedures used to adapt to the Iraqi context, while focusing on transparency, inclusiveness, and sustainability. While the Bank's current focus in Iraq is on reconstruction and essential services, the near term offers a chance to lay the groundwork for credible institutions of social inclusion, in addition to supporting sustainable reconstruction and reform. This paper looks at how Iraq, a country with ample natural and human capital, can look past the immediate needs of post-conflict reconstruction to an eventual return as a middle-income country that managed its own affairs and contributed assistance to other countries. Models for reconstruction are closely looked at as to how to move Iraq to country ownership. The paper also looks at how to adopt post conflict reconstruction experience and adapting it to Iraq. The final section of the paper deals with lessons of experience and lessons learned.
  • Publication
    Tunisia : Understanding Successful Socioeconomic Development, A Joint World Bank–Islamic Development Bank Evaluation of Assistance
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2005) World Bank; Islamic Development Bank
    Tunisia has successfully shifted from resource-based exports dominated by oil and gas to manufactures and services. The economy is now driven mainly by textile, electrical, mechanical, and food processing exports; tourism and related activities; and production of olives and cereals. Real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth has been rising consistently, increasing from 3 percent annually over 1985-90 to more than 5 percent annually over 1996-02. Today, with a per capita income of US$2,000, Tunisians enjoy more than two-and-a-half times the real incomes that their parents had 30 years ago. Tunisia signed an association agreement with the European Union (EUAA) that provides for free trade in manufacturing by 2008. The European Union (EU) has been Tunisia's dominant trading partner; the region is the source of 67 percent of capital flows into Tunisia, accounts for a large share of Tunisia's tourism market, and is the region with the largest community of expatriate Tunisians. This dominance renders Tunisia's economy vulnerable to adverse developments in the EU.
  • Publication
    Making Microfinance Work Better in the Middle East and North Africa
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2004-06-01) Brandsma, Judith; Hart, Laurence
    This report analyzes microfinance in the Middle East and North Africa, and offers recommendations on how to further develop the industry. Microfinance is the provision of financial services to the entrepreneurial poor, a definition with two important features: it emphasizes a range of financial services-not just credit-and it emphasizes the entrepreneurial poor. The region's emerging microfinance industry differs from those in other parts of the world. Expectations are too high: microfinance is not a panacea for, or solution to unemployment, for narrowly defined, most microfinance institutions only offer credit for business activities, and do not offer savings or deposit services. Governments are interested in regulating microfinance, and several countries have passed laws on microfinance, efforts that risk jeopardizing the industry's healthy development. Moreover, second generation issues may slow the industry's growth, demonstrated by the fact that many microfinance institutions are experiencing crises, after rapid initial growth, and need time to consolidate and restructure. Islamic finance methodologies are being applied by new microfinance programs, and existing programs that use Islamic finance-some of them very large-have become more visible. This report draws heavily on two Bank surveys of microfinance institutions in the region, one assessing developments as of the end of 1997, and the other as of end of 1999. Egypt remains the region's leading provider but has lost market share, while Morocco is second, having experienced dramatic growth since 1997. But other countries, such as Lebanon, and the West Bank and Gaza, saw their microfinance industries stagnate, or even shrink. This was mainly because microfinance players in these countries went through restructuring, and consolidation as they faced second generation issues. The report stipulates that for programs to reach the scale of microfinance institutions as in other parts of the world, they must raise funds commercially-including taking deposits, which will also enable them to broaden their approach to microfinance, moving beyond credit for businesses. And, by mobilizing savings and deposits, they will be able to serve many more clients. Donors and practitioners alike, should be prepared for the array of new training needs, deciding to transform into a new legal entity, and institutional form. Policymakers, meanwhile, should be prepared to create legal environments appropriate for prudent, but growing microfinance.