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Oxfam reaction to World Bank $100 billion increase in lending
World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim today announced a series of measures aimed at strengthening the World Bank Group to better meet the evolving needs of clients, including a $100 billion increase in the lending capacity of the Bank’s lending arm for middle-income countries over the next decade.
In reaction, Oxfam’s Nicolas Mombrial said:
On doubling annual lending:
“This increased financial firepower is a vote of confidence by the World Bank’s members. Jim Kim now has what he needs to put the Bank’s new strategy into effect.
"More money for development is good but the quality of World Bank lending needs to improve. This will be bad news for poor people if World Bank social and environmental standards are not improved.
“The Bank’s private sector arm, the IFC, must be reformed if it wants to spend more and increase its development impact. More resources must be tied to better consultation and protection of communities affected by IFC investments.
“More lending by the Bank should not further entrench a culture that measures staff performance on the basis of money out of the door. Development impact should be front and center for the Bank."
“It’s good that Kim is talking about inequality but it’s now time for a clear commitment to tackle the extreme gap between the richest and the poorest.
“The Bank needs to take equity seriously when it invests in large power and infrastructure projects – deals like this have to benefit the poorest, and have strong environmental and social safeguards."
Caroline Hooper-Box, +1 202 496 1173, firstname.lastname@example.org