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  24 Jan 2023, 18:26

WB MD concludes 3-day visit, reiterates strong support to Bangladesh

DHAKA, Jan 24, 2023 (BSS) - World Bank (WB) Managing Director for Operations 
Axel van Trotsenburg today concluded a three-day visit to Bangladesh, 
reaffirming the World Bank's strong support for Bangladesh to help achieve 
its vision of upper-middle income status by 2031.
 
He marked the commemoration of the 50 years of partnership between the World 
Bank and Bangladesh.

"Bangladesh's development and growth trajectory is an inspiration for many 
countries. It has tackled many development challenges in remarkable ways. It 
has reduced poverty in record time and has played a leading and innovative 
role in disaster risk management and adaptation to climate change," said van 
Trotsenburg.
 
He said the World Bank has been a steadfast partner for the past five decades 
and remains committed to help Bangladesh achieve green and inclusive economic 
growth and development, said a press release here.

Yesterday, van Trotsenburg met Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and commended 
Bangladesh's role in climate change adaptation and disaster preparedness, and 
her strong leadership as the chair of the Climate Vulnerable Forum during 
2020-2022.
 
"Despite being severely affected by climate change, Bangladesh has emerged as 
a global leader in climate resilience and disaster preparedness by taking a 
bold and innovative approach reducing cyclone-related deaths more than 100-
fold since 1971," van Trotsenburg added. 

The World Bank helped Bangladesh build and rehabilitate more than 700 km of 
coastal embankments, 1,000 cyclone shelters that also operate as schools, and 
550 km of paved roads that improve access for surrounding villages. 

Today, van Trotsenburg visited a World Bank-financed cyclone shelter that 
serves as a primary school during normal weather and met with the local 
communities.
 
He visited the Kutupalong Rohingya camps in Cox's Bazar and thanked 
Bangladesh for its generosity to provide shelter to about 1.1 million 
forcibly displaced Rohingya people. The World Bank has leveraged US$590 
million in grant financing to help Bangladesh meet to the basic needs of the 
Rohingya people and the host communities.
 
During the visit, he also met with the finance minister, senior government 
officials, and development partners and discussed Bangladesh's development 
priorities. He was accompanied by World Bank Vice-President for the South 
Asia Region Martin Raiser.
 
"The World Bank is helping Bangladesh navigate through challenges of global 
shocks, including the impacts of the pandemic and the Russian invasion of 
Ukraine, and address barriers to higher growth," van Trotsenburg said.
 
He also said that they are committed to supporting Bangladesh in its goal to 
become an upper-middle income country by 2031. For this, we will help create 
more private sector jobs, improve social and economic inclusion, and reduce 
climate vulnerability.

Over the 50-year partnership, the World Bank has committed about US$39 
billion in International Development Association (IDA) financing in the form 
of grants, interest-free loans, and concessional credits to help the country.

Currently, Bangladesh has the largest ongoing IDA programme and the World 
Bank is Bangladesh's largest development partner.
 

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