Uganda receives sh248b World Bank loan
By Samuel Sanya
Maria Kiwanuka signing the Ninth Poverty Reduction Support Credit loan with World Bank
Uganda has received a US$100m (about sh248b) World Bank loan for poverty reduction through enhanced service delivery, less than a week after rigorous Parliamentary consideration.
The signing of the 9th Poverty Reduction Support Credit (PRSC) loan was effectively delayed till Monday from Friday last week as Parliamentarians reached consensus.
This brings the total loans disbursed under the program to US$1.2b (sh3trillion) since 2001 with one final installment still in the plans.
Maria Kiwanuka, the finance minister said that the PRSC loans have played a vital role in infrastructure development, rural development and capacity building to ensure a strong economic footing.
"This is very timely given the pressure on government revenues due to the challenging macroeconomic environment we are currently operating in. with the PRSC funding we have able to attain economic growth of over 7%," she explained.
The loan will be used to improve value for money in core sectors of health, education (Universal Primary Education), water supply and Sanitation and road maintenance.
The hardship allowance currently being enjoyed by public servants in hard-to-reach and hard-to-live areas was part of the previous loan, the PRSC 8 according to World Bank documents.
Mustapha Ndiaye, the World Bank Uganda country director said that the Bank is committed to supporting Uganda's move towards middle income status in the next three years through various development projects.
"We welcome government's ambitious move toward middle-income status in the year 2015. We are hopeful that this loan will support interventions to bring down poverty," he said.
Keith Muhakanizi, finance ministry permanent secretary pointed out that the loan is part of allocations in the current financial year 2011-2012 and that part of it has already been disbursed through an overdraft from the Central Bank.
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