Why the World Bank is ill-prepared when it comes to dealing with the Middle East
The World Bank’s anti-poverty programmes are not well-structured for countries beset by conflict, and do too little for women suffering from violence, according to internal study released Monday.
While the bank has prioritised helping the 370 million people living in 33 “low-income fragile and conflict-affected states”, it needs to better prepare its programs in those countries, the study by the in-house Independent Evaluation Group (IEG) said.
“Country assistance strategies have lacked tailoring to fragility and conflict drivers and realism, and do not currently have contingencies based on political economy and conflict risks,” the study concluded.
In addition, the bank has “paid insufficient attention to conflict-related violence against women and economic empowerment of women in low-income fragile and conflict-affected states.”
Anis Danim, the lead analyst for the IEG, said that World Bank programs in poor conflict countries have registered progress in areas like community-driven development and building citizen capacity — for instance providing access to education and health care
Even so, he said, “the results in these countries has proved to be challenging.”
As a group, fragile and conflict-affected states are much poorer, grow more slowly, and have higher population growth rates than other most-impoverished countries.
That means they need more tailored strategies for assistance, the IEG report says.
However, it said, the Bank “lacks a realistic framework for inclusive growth and jobs that is based on economic opportunities and constraints in fragile and conflict-affected states.”
It also said Bank programs are often too focused on helping ex-combatants — mainly male — after conflicts and offer less for women who are victims of the violence.
“Most of the demobilisation, disarmament, and reintegration programs were not gender sensitive,” it said.
- Diversifying to Africa: Gulf countries to pump $30 billion into the continent
- As American decade of easy money ends, Gulf currencies brace themselves for a 'nervous breakdown'
- More money to be taken care of: private wealth growth in the GCC exposes need for prudence
- With $100 billion in foreign reserves: is Libya's central bank monopolizing the country's economic potential?
- After 23 years in office,why was the UAE's central bank governor replaced?
- UN and World Bank to issue two reports on state of Palestinian economy
- World Bank expects decline in growth rate of Arab economies
- Lebanon's economy is stable, despite exposure to Syrian conflict, says HSBC
- European Commission allocates EUR 28 million for Palestinian, Iraqi refugees
- USAID awards Iraq local governance contract