World Bank: pledges for Iraq total $32 billion
Loans and grants pledged at the International Donor’s Conference for Iraq, in Madrid, Spain on October 23 to 24, totaled a minimum of $32 billion, according to an official tally recently issued by the World Bank. This amount does not include humanitarian assistance, export credits and guarantees, and in-kind assistance offered by a number of countries.
The $32 billion figure is based on the low end of the range of assistance announced by the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF), which pledged $2.5-$4.5 billion and $1.7-$3.4 billion respectively in Madrid. If the high end of this range is calculated, the total loans and grants pledged could rise up to $36 billion.
Of the total pledges, the majority - approximately $22 billion - was in grants, while $9.6-$13.3 billion were in loans, given the ranges provided by the World Bank and the IMF. Donors have the option of either channeling their financial assistance to Iraq bilaterally or through a multidonor trust fund facility for Iraq that will be managed by the World Bank and United Nations.
Meanwhile, the World Bank appointed Fayezul Choudhury, Vice President and Controller, as representative to the International Advisory and Monitoring Board (IAMB) of the Development Fund for Iraq. Charles McDonough, Director of the Accounting Department, will serve as Alternate Representative.
The IAMB was established as part of UN Security Council Resolution 1483, approved last May, which lifted sanctions on Iraq, phased out the UN Oil-for-Food Program, and aims to meet the humanitarian and reconstruction needs of the Iraqi people.
The IAMB’s aim will be to ensure that the development fund, established with Iraqi oil revenues, will be used in a transparent manner to benefit the people of Iraq and that export sales of petroleum, petroleum products and natural gas are in line with international market best practices. — (menareport.com)
© 2003 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)