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    Financial crisis facility to deliver $2 billion


    International Trade Forum - Issue 3-4/2008 

    The World Bank Group will speed funds to the world's poorest countries to help them cope with falling revenues, investment and trade in the wake of the global financial crisis. An initial $2 billion will be available to the hardest-hit countries to finance expenditures needed to maintain economic stability and sustain growth, address volatility and protect the poor.

    The money is likely to support public spending on infrastructure, education, health and social safety-net projects, such as school and maternal feeding programmes. "We want to help countries manage this downturn with financing to help minimize its impacts and by assisting them in designing supportive policies," says World Bank Group President Robert B. Zoellick.

    The Bank is creating a financial crisis facility to fast-track funds to developing countries. The new facility will expedite approval processes for money from a $42 billion fund, known as IDA 15, for 78 of the world's poorest countries. It created a similar facility in May to speed support to countries hit hard by high food and fuel prices. The Bank estimates 100 million people have been driven into poverty in 2008 by the food crisis.

    See: http://go.worldbank.org/WH4CK46A40