The World Bank today marks the 20th anniversary of its cooperation with the Republic of Armenia, a partnership that has made an important contribution to improving lives of the Armenian children, women, and men.
Since independence, in the early 1990s,Armenia’s economy has undergone a profound transformation. Sustained growth, ambitious reforms, and external inflows of capital and remittances have created a market-oriented environment that is highly receptive to trade, capital, and technological innovation.
Starting with an initial $12 million Operation designed to assist the economic reforms, the World Bank has remained a firm development partner, through 56 operations committing over $1, 6 billion to Armenia, throughout the last two decades.
“This is a significant milestone for the Bank and we are proud to have been serving Armenian people,” the World Bank Regional Director for South Caucasus Henry Kerali said. “Armenia has come a long way in the last two decades. Thanks to sustained reform efforts by the Government since early 1990s, the country has managed to increase incomes for its citizens, improve transport and infrastructure, and curtail poverty. However, the country continues to face social and economic challenges, in the aftermath of the recent global and Euro zone crisis. Throughout all these changes, the World Bank Group constantly engaged with Armenia– forging a solid partnership through good times and bad.”
According to the Country Client Survey conducted in the fall of 2012, the World Bank’s overall effectiveness in Armenia is rated 7.6 (out of 10 point scale); the respect with which the Bank treats stakeholders in the country is rated 8.6; the staff preparedness is graded at 8.3. Looking toward the future, respondents on average rated the potential role to be played by the Bank in terms ofArmenia’s development landscape at the level of 8.3. The rating on the technical quality of the Bank’s knowledge stands at 7.6.
“The Client Survey outcomes are encouraging for us, the World Bank Armenia Country Team, especially prior to the preparation of the next Country Partnership Strategy (CPS) covering the period FY2014-17”, Country Manager for Armenia Jean-Michel Happi said. “Our staff is our main asset and the key to success of the Bank Group’s financing, knowledge sharing, and advisory services.”
The current Country Partnership Strategy forArmenia, which comes to an end in mid-2013, has been developed in the aftermath of the global economic crisis of 2009. The World Bank has supported the Government by envisaging total IDA/IBRD allocation of US$640.6 million with IDA share equaling to US$277 million. On top of the lending operations the Bank has 16 active trust fund operations totaling to about $15 million, as well as providing sector diagnoses and strategies that underpin the Bank’s dialogue and possible interventions. Currently, there are 14 active projects financed by the Bank.