The World Bank will start disbursing the Zimbabwe Reconstruction Fund at end of this month although the Bretton Wood institution is still in the process of mobilising resources for the initiative, an official has said.
BY VICTORIA MTOMBA
In a response to questions from Standardbusiness last week, the World Bank said it was in the process of allocating funds received from Norway, Denmark and the international financial institution’s own State and Peace Building Fund together with funds that other development partners have pledged for 2015.
“We expect disbursements to start on the first few projects as early as end of March 2015. We are still in the process of mobilising resources for the Trust Fund,” the bank said.
“There has been quite a bit of interest and discussions are on-going with various partners, including European Union, Development For International Development, Swedish International Development Cooperation and Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit-GIZ, among others. So far, a first set of agreements have been signed with the governments of Denmark and Norway and the State and Peace Building Fund.”
The World Bank said the allocation was across projects and would be in line with and informed by the economic blueprint Zimbabwe Agenda for Sustainable Socio Economic Transformation (Zim Asset) objectives and the bank’s Interim Strategy Note for Zimbabwe.
The international bank said it would notify stakeholders when the programmes are approved by the Policy Oversight Committee comprising government, World Bank and development partners.
The fund is expected to reach $100 million this year. As of last year, the figure stood at $40 million.
The World Bank said it supported a range of technical work on the public sector wage bill for the government of Zimbabwe over the past few years.
“This existing work is informing an on-going discussion with government on what specific measures the ZIMREF will support, to address the very serious constraints that the wage bill is placing on the fiscal space for public investments and public service delivery,” the World Bank said.
The World Bank said the pledged commitments by some donors were received only in line with actual spending patterns as per good cash flow management.
The Zimbabwe Reconstruction Fund was set up last year by World Bank and development partners as a continuation of replaced Zimbabwe Analytical Multi-Donor Fund.