World Bank seeks to fast-track emergency response in poor countries

The World Bank has launched a new mechanism that it said would allow partner countries to tap the bank’s resources more quickly in the aftermath of a crisis or emergency.

The Immediate Response Mechanism provides for the inclusion, upon request, of emergency response components in existing and future investments in countries that receive assistance from the World Bank’s International Development Association. Countries that request for this option and meet the eligibility criteria would then be able to access portions of undisbursed funding in their portfolios, up to a total of $2.2 billion.

The mechanism, according to World Bank Vice President for Concessional Finance and Global Partnership Axel van Trotsenburg, would allow the bank to respond to economic emergencies and humanitarian crisie in IDA countries within two weeks.

Financing unlocked through the mechanism could be used to support recovery efforts, repair of basic infrastructure, resumption of basic services and development of programs to restart economic activity, the World Bank explained.

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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.