Washington : The World Bank today approved a USD 12 million grant to Bhutan to support the country’s institutional reforms and on-going medium-term policy.
The ‘Second Development Policy’ Grant is designed to support the government’s development strategy in enhancing economic growth, achieving better socio-economic outcomes, and reducing poverty, the Bank said in a statement.
The grant seeks to strengthen Bhutan’s efforts to provide sound macroeconomic and fiscal underpinnings for the country’s steady economic growth, it said.
“This is expected to help improve the quality of life for all sections of the population, especially the poor and under-served. Measures to enhance access to education and health services with a special focus on remote areas will be particularly beneficial for the poor.
“Efforts to enhance the investment climate for private sector growth and employment generation will create new opportunities and reduce the dependence of the poor on agricultural employment” the Bank said.
“For Bhutan, which is on track for achieving most of the Millennium Development Goals, the expected benefits of this grant in supporting the government’s programme outreach and in strengthening budget management is substantial,” Alastair McKechnie, Country Director of Bhutan said.
“Continuing support from the World Bank will help deepen the reform programmes and build continuity during the forthcoming political transition to constitutional monarchy,” he added.
The USD 12 million grant is from the International Development Association, the World Bank’s concessionary lending arm.