To alleviate poverty and improve national economyWB offers lavish support to Yemen [Archives:2005/866/Business & Economy]

August 8 2005

Mahyoub Al-Kamaly
The World Bank has confirmed that Yemen has the largest number of projects supported by it in the Middle East and North Africa. It is a fact showing strong ties and support for the WB to Yemen. The additional support offered by the WB depends on the performance projects fund and the application of a policy required for reforms including judiciary reform and specifying the prices of energy services.

A statement issued by the UN Media Center indicated that Yemen had good facilities, pondered upon as factors for development including its tourist and cultural heritage. For upgrading these facilities, Yemen is advised to continue exploiting its national workforce to strengthen its institutions and improve the investment climate.

The WB and donors may help the Yemeni government in reaching the fruits of its efforts, and as Mr. Jims Walfenson, former WB President said that making a change is the responsibility of Yemenis.

He pointed out the support offered by the WB through closer partnership with the Yemeni governorate and the WB's strategy that concentrates on fighting poverty by offering loans, technical support, and analytical and consultant assistances.

-The strategy of helping the country) is considered as a WB's plan to be implemented during 3-5 years according to the economic and social performance of the country, the official challenges facing development and the government's development strategy.

This strategy offers the previous assistance programs for the country implemented by the WB and gaining lessons and experiments for the future. The current strategy of helping the country extending between 2003 and 2005 is in the hand of all the people and stands for part of the WB's policy in uttering information. The strategy will be developed during 2006-2010 in consultation with the Yemeni government, donors, and the civil society. This strategy is based on the government's new poverty alleviation strategy and the third development five-year plan, both are considered two documents of the national policy that reflect pledges of the Yemeni government toward its nation.

The statement mentioned that through its support in form of loan policy, the WB pursues precious efforts to ensure joint consultation by the two sides and the transparent process that guarantees using loan revenues for purposes for which loans were granted. Drawing convenient attention will help achieve the economic goals, in addition to efficiency and fairness in the purchasing process funded by the WB. Moreover, the WB gives more priority to supporting administration and reforming the government's purchasing systems in the indebted countries.

Raising the level of efficiency and transparency in managing expenditures of public resources has a correlation with poverty alleviation and achieving continuing development.

The former WB President signaled out that since Yemeni joined the WB in 1969, the WB's cooperation with the Yemeni government has been distinguished with continuing consultancies and coordination for improving the economic situations and the living standards of the Yemeni people. He added that Yemen was facing several challenges, but alleviating poverty remains the prime challenge. This problem got magnified due to the rapid population growth in the country estimated at 3% every year, the sharp illiteracy rate, mainly among females, the high unemployment rate and water shortage. Because of such big challenges, the WB concentrates on enhancing economic development and alleviating poverty in the country.

Yemen is classified among the poorest countries in the world according its average per capita income that is US$ 570. Consequently, Yemen receives financial assistance from the International Development Institution, one of the WB establishments that offer easy loans. The International Development Institution provides financial assistance through interest-free loans that can be paid back in 40 years.