IDA launches US$1.5 billion Borrowing Program to address Development Issues in the World’s Poorest Countries

The International Development Association(IDA) yesterday launched its first bond in its nearly 60 years history, which marks the launch of IDA’s borrowing program in the global capital markets, raised US$1.5 billion to address some of the most pressing development issues in the world’s poorest countries.

IDA’s borrowing program will enable IDA to significantly scale up its support toward achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, while offering investors an efficient way to contribute to global development.

On this occasion, World Bank Group President, Jim Yong Kim said, “Today’s bond issue will allow IDA to tap into the power of capital markets to tackle some of the world’s biggest challenges and help millions lift themselves out of poverty. While it is a new bond issuer, IDA is an established institution, with an almost 60-year track record as the leading source of development finance and expertise for some of the fastest growing economies in the world. As a borrower, it leverages its unrivaled capital position – the largest equity of any multilateral development bank – and decades of strong donor support, a solid track record of repayments, and prudent financial management.”

World Bank Vice President for Development Finance, Axel van Trotsenburg said, “Three years ago, the international community agreed that business as usual is no longer enough for development finance, and committed to leveraging aid balance sheets, scaling-up, and raising more capital to help the poorest countries achieve Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030. IDA’s historic entry into the global capital markets, with its first issuance of an IDA bond today, represents a transformational shift responding to shareholder ambitions, development needs, and investor requirements.”

IDA provides technical expertise and low-cost financing for projects and programs that boost economic growth and reduce poverty in the world’s poorest countries— from tackling conflict, fragility and violence; forced displacement; climate change; and gender inequality to promoting governance, institution building, creating jobs and supporting a strong private sector for economic transformation.

Until now, IDA has been virtually unleveraged, building up an unparalleled equity base of US$158 billion. In 2016, IDA shareholders agreed to transform IDA’s financing model, leveraging its strong capital base to pioneer a new model for development finance that combines donor funding with funding raised in the capital markets.

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