Wednesday, February 29, 2012

IN UGANDA WORLD BANK TO HELP IMPROVE HEALTH, GIRL EDUCATION, WATER SOURCES AND PAVED ROADS

NEWS RELEASE: World Bank to help improve health, girl education, water sources, and paved roads in Uganda

World Bank to help improve health, girl education, water sources, and paved roads in Uganda

WASHINGTON, February 28, 2012 – The World Bank Board of Executive Directors today approved an International Development Association (IDA) credit* of US$100 million to improve efficiency in four service delivery sectors in Uganda covering health, education, water & sanitation and transport.

The credit seeks to increase the number and proportion of children immunized with Diphtheria Pertussis Tetanus (DPT3) to 90 percent from 82 percent; increase the number of girls in public schools passing Primary Leaving Examinations with grades I-III to 46 percent from 45 percent; improve functionality of rural valley tanks and dams to 84 percent and 30 percent respectively from 82 percent and 23 percent; and increase the proportion of paved national roads in fair to good condition to 80 percent from 65 percent. Interventions will target predominantly the poor and lagging areas where Government is the major provider of social services.

“This operation supports key reforms in public procurement regulations and developing a more performance- oriented public sector through new performance agreements with high-level officials and government adoption of a single framework for results oriented management, output oriented budgeting and budget monitoring”, said Paul Wade, Senior Country Economist for Uganda and Task Team Leader for the Operation.

The 9th Poverty Reduction Support Credit (PRSC9) which is prepared with other donors under the Joint Budget Support Framework is the second of three development policy operations to support Uganda's National Development Plan (NDP) and covers the period 2012-13. It focuses on two policy clusters: 1) Reforms in Public Expenditure Management, Public Financial Management and Public Service Management that Improve Service Delivery and 2) Value for Money in Public Service Delivery Sectors.

Building on the previous PRSC 8, the new financing is expected to improve budget credibility; promote more transparent and efficient public financial and sector management. It will concentrate on accountability and improved service delivery systems at the local government level that should lead to better quality of education and health services. It will also result in boosting Uganda’s competitiveness and facilitate economic activity through improved infrastructure, especially Water for Production, as well as the transport sector, focusing on improving the condition of Uganda's road network.

“With this new credit we hope to return to the course of reform implementation and economic management, and Government has reiterated its commitment to steady progress in these areas”, said Moustapha Ndiaye, World Bank Uganda Country Manager.

PRSC8 which was the first World Bank credit to be designed under the Joint Budget Support Framework together with the Government of Uganda and 10 other development partners, focused on mitigating the impact of the global economic downturn of 2009, which threatened the pace of poverty reduction, by focusing on efficiency in public spending and value for money to create fiscal space. Not only was it effective in reducing the transaction costs for the Government of Uganda, it also increased national ownership, and improved budget support transparency and predictability. PRSC 8 also advanced performance management in public service delivery, including performance contracts for head teachers, and ensured more equitable deployment and retention of health and education sector staff to underserved areas.

The World Bank’s current portfolio in Uganda consists of 17 IDA-financed projects with a net commitment of approximately US$1.3 billion making it the 8th largest in the Africa region. The portfolio also includes five regional projects; 13 Recipient-Executed Trust Funds worth $25.3 million and 36 Bank-Executed Trust Funds with net commitments of $12.4 million. Most of the Bank’s portfolio is invested in infrastructure development, with approximately 50 percent of commitments allocated to energy, urban development and roads.

Contacts:
In Kampala: Steven Shalita +256-772-779-803, sshalita@worldbank.org
In Washington: Aby Toure (202) 473 8302, akonate@worldbank.org

For more information on the World Bank’s work in Uganda, please visit
www.worldbank.org/uganda

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