Kigali, September 14, 2008—His
Excellency President Paul Kagame today opened a weeklong training program
being held in Kigali for World Bank and IFC country directors and managers
from Africa, Asia, Europe and Latin America.
The program is intended to provide management
and leadership learning in the context of the World Bank Group's organizational
strategy and the rapidly changing needs of client countries. This week's
program marks the first time such management program is held in a country
Rwanda has been selected as the site
because it offers an excellent case study of a government undergoing rapid
change that the World Bank and IFC managers can learn from.
"Rwanda is the right place to hold
this program since increased and improved operations in Africa is at the
center of World Bank and IFC strategies for increasing our development
impact" said Jean Philippe Prosper, IFC Director for Eastern and Sothern
Africa. "Today Rwanda demonstrates both the promise and the challenge
that development institutions face in supporting a country committed to
reform and improve lives for its people".
As the World Bank is undergoing decentralization
of its staff, the program presents an opportunity to get feedback on how
the World Bank can better serve its client countries. President Kagame
and other government officials are expected to discuss issues around how
financing can be delivered in a rapidly changing environment and that meet
the needs of a developing country like Rwanda.
The work of the World Bank and IFC in
Rwanda supports infrastructure and competitiveness (such as transport,
energy, water and sanitation, and information and communications technologies),
leasing, education, entrepreneurship, investment climate and mobilizing
direct investments in areas such as agribusiness, financial markets, infrastructure,
and tourism. During the past two fiscal years, IFC has made more than $25
million in new investments in Rwanda. At the end of FY08, the World Bank's
Rwanda portfolio consisted of 12 projects with net commitment of $374 million.
About the World Bank
The World Bank is a vital source of
financial and technical assistance to developing countries around the world.
It is made up of two unique development institutions owned by 185 member
countries—the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD)
and the International Development Association (IDA). The IBRD focuses on
middle income and creditworthy poor countries, while IDA focuses on the
poorest countries in the world. Together they provide low-interest loans,
interest-free credit and grants to developing countries for education,
health, infrastructure, communications and many other purposes.
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group,
fosters sustainable economic growth in developing countries by financing
private sector investment, mobilizing private capital in local and international
financial markets, and providing advisory and risk mitigation services
to businesses and governments. IFC's vision is that poor people should
have the opportunity to escape poverty and improve their lives. In FY07,
IFC committed $8.2 billion and mobilized an additional $3.9 billion through
syndications and structured finance for 299 investments in 69 developing
countries. IFC also provided advisory services in 97 countries. For more
information, visit www.ifc.org.