World Bank OKs Environment Aid for Madagascar

Madagascar is set to receive $52 million from the World Bank as support for the country’s efforts to conserve its environment and unique biodiversity.

The World Bank approved the additional funds on Tuesday (June 21). The money, which includes a $10 million grant from the International Development Association, will be used to extend an existing environmental conservation project beyond its original Dec. 30 closing date. Specifically, the money will fund community development, conservation and ecotourism activities over the next three years in 30 national parks and three protected areas managed by the Madagascar National Parks.

The World Bank clarified that the approval of this funding does not signal the start of its re-engagement in Madagascar, where the bank’s projects have been on hold since 2009.

“It is important to note that this additional financing was approved as an exception on environmental and humanitarian grounds given the global significance of Madagascar’s biodiversity and the needs of the communities living near the parks,” Jamal Saghir, World Bank director for sustainable Development in Africa said. “This does not signal the World Bank’s re-engagement with Madagascar, but signals our recognition that the environmental and social costs of inaction are just too high.”

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    Ivy Mungcal

    As former senior staff writer, Ivy Mungcal contributed to several Devex publications. Her focus is on breaking news, and in particular on global aid reform and trends in the United States, Europe, the Caribbean, and the Americas. Before joining Devex in 2009, Ivy produced specialized content for U.S. and U.K.-based business websites.