World Bank Group (www.worldbank.org) is one of the world leading institutions in the fight against poverty and improvement of living standards of people in the developing countries. It is a development bank providing loans, advisory support for policies, technical assistance and services focused on knowledge exchange.
World Bank is one of the UN Specialized Agencies, having 189 member countries as shareholders. Number of shares one country may have is approximately based upon the size of its economy. Governments – shareholders in the World Bank are represented by the Board of Governors, as main policy creator, delegating specific tasks to the 25 Executive Directors. President of the World Bank chairs the meetings of the Board of Directors and is responsible for the overall management of the Bank.
World Bank Group comprises five closely related institutions:
- International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) aims to reduce poverty in middle-income countries and the poorer countries, by encouraging sustainable development through loans, guarantees and analytical services;
- International Development Association (IDA) finances the poorest countries so as to reduce poverty by providing interest-free loans and grants according to certain eligibility criteria;
- International Financial Corporation (IFC), as the largest multilateral source of loans and financing with equity for projects for the private sector in the developing countries, encourages sustainable development of the private sector, mainly through financing of projects, assistance for private companies to mobilize financial resources on the international financial market and providing technical assistance for both the business activities and the Governments;
- Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA) ensures the investors against political or non-commercial risks, intermediates in disputes among investors and Governments, provides advises to the Governments regarding the attraction of investments;
- International Centre for Solving Investment Disputes (ICSID) solves investment disputes among foreign investors and their host countries.
Republic of North Macedonia became World Bank member in 1993 and it is part of the Dutch Constituency. World Bank Mission in the Republic of North Macedonia is focused on encouraging and supporting job creation, as well as improving the living standard by implementing and financing projects, consulting services and research aimed at capacity building, human resource development and investments in infrastructure (www.worldbank.org.mk).
So far, World Bank has proven to be exceptionally loyal and committed partner, providing contribution in particular to the reform process and the modernization of all segments in the Macedonian economy. World Bank on-going assistance is implemented in line with the priorities determined under the 2019 – 2023 Country Partnership Strategy with the World Bank.
According to the new Country Partnership Strategy of the Republic of North Macedonia with the World Bank, assistance from this international institution will be focused on the following:
- Export-Led Growth: Improve the Environment for a Competitive Private Sector
- Inclusive Growth: Expand Skills and Opportunities for the Most Vulnerable
- Sustainable Growth: Enhance Sustainability and Build Resilience to Shocks.
Although most of World Bank assistance in the Republic of North Macedonia includes IBRD loans creating obligation for their repayment, World Bank also plays significant role in the donor community in the Republic of North Macedonia through its sustainable projects.