The World Bank Group affirmed its commitment to the Philippines by transferring to the government the $300-million budget support under a development policy loan.
According to Axel Van Trotsenburg, the new World Bank vice president for East Asia and the Pacific (EAP), the loan will support the country’s critical reforms for accelerating growth that creates more jobs and reduces poverty.
“I wanted to spend some time in the Philippines to appreciate the progress that has been made in this country and also [identify]the challenges and where the World Bank can be helpful in the future,” van Trotsenburg said in a press conference on Friday.
The World Bank official arrived in the country last week to confer with the country’s
leaders on how the bank could best align its emerging assistance strategy with the country’s inclusive growth agenda in the next three years.
This is van Trotsenburg’s first visit to the Philippines, following his trips to other countries in the EAP region since he assumed his post on February 1, 2013.
He also reported that he had a meeting with President Benigno Aquino 3rd and the government’s economic team, and discussed how the World Bank can best provide support to help make a difference in the lives of many more poor Filipinos, aligned with the government’s social contact.
Van Trotsenburg congratulated the country for its sound macroeconomic management and robust growth.
The Philippine economy grew 6.6 percent in 2012 and 7.8 percent in the first quarter of 2013. The country is now considered as the fastest-growing market in Asia.
“Turning high growth into inclusive growth is increasingly important for the Philippines, by deepening and accelerating reforms that will create more and better jobs to reduce poverty,” said van Trotsenburg.
“There is clear convergence between the government’s goal of inclusive growth and the World Bank Group’s twin goals to end extreme global poverty by 2030, and promote shared prosperity for the bottom 40 percent of the population in each country,” the World Bank official added.