Freetown, SIERRA LEONE – The World Bank has sanctioned a significant grant of $65 million to aid the Government of Sierra Leone in tackling pivotal developmental challenges through the Bank’s general budget support instrument.
This financial assistance, framed as a Development Policy Financing (DPF), signifies Sierra Leone’s receipt of the Inclusive and Sustainable Growth DPF, as revealed by a statement from the Bank. The grant aims to bolster reforms centered around macroeconomic stability, governance in the mining sector, land management practices, gender parity, and fortifying public sector accountability.
This DPF initiative, the third and final installment in a series of operations, builds upon a comprehensive reform strategy aimed at fostering sustainable, resilient, and inclusive growth within the nation.
Abdu Muwonge, World Bank Country Manager for Sierra Leone, highlighted, “Sierra Leone’s progress in eradicating extreme poverty and enhancing shared prosperity hinges on sustained macroeconomic stability, robust growth, and a conducive environment for maximizing its abundant natural resources. This funding supports reforms crucial in addressing governance challenges within the mining and land sectors, fostering inclusivity in financial access, employment, education, and curbing fiscal and debt vulnerabilities.”
In their official statement, the Bank underscored that Sierra Leone’s path to sustainable and inclusive growth has been hindered by various multifaceted external shocks (economic, epidemic, climatic), governance deficiencies, and restricted fiscal capacity. These factors limit the potential for pro-poor growth through public investments.
“Sierra Leone’s economy has faced successive crises, exacerbating inflationary pressures, fiscal strain, and augmenting risks to debt sustainability. The reforms backed by this initiative aim to confront key developmental challenges while also catering to the heightened financial requirements of the government,” the Bank elaborated.
Smriti Seth, World Bank Senior Economist and Task Team Leader, emphasized the importance of ongoing structural reforms in land, labor, and natural resource management to fortify sustainability and resilience within the economy.
“The World Bank remains committed to supporting the government’s endeavor in implementing vital structural reforms to foster inclusive growth,” Seth affirmed.
The DPF endeavors to rectify deficiencies in land management, governance within the mining sector and State-Owned Enterprises (SOEs), and fortify climate adaptation and resilience. The supported reforms align with the World Bank’s crisis response framework, geared toward fostering green, resilient, and inclusive development, and the Global Crisis Response Framework. ZIJ/18/12/2023