Inequality in South Asia appears to be moderate when looking at standard indicators such as the Gini index, which are based on consumption expenditures per capita. But other pieces of evidence reveal enormous gaps, from extravagant wealth at one end to lack of access to the most basic services at the other. Which prompts the question: How bad is inequality in South Asia? And why would that matter? This book takes a comprehensive look at the extent, nature, and drivers of inequality in this very dynamic region of the world. It discusses how some dimensions of inequality, such as high returns to investments in human capital, contribute to economic growth while others, such as high payoffs to rent-seeking or broken aspirations, undermine it. Drawing upon a variety of data sources, it disentangles the contribution that opportunity in young age, mobility in adult years, and support throughout life make to inequality at any point in time. Equally important, the book sheds light on the prospects of escaping disadvantage over time. The analysis shows that South Asia performs poorly in terms of opportunity. Access to basic services is partial at best, and can be traced to characteristics at birth, including gender, location, and caste. Conversely, the region has had a robust performance in terms of geographical and occupational mobility despite its cluttered urbanization and widespread informality. Migration and jobs have served disadvantaged groups better than the rest, highlighting the importance of the urbanization and private sector development agendas. Support falls somewhere in between. Poverty alleviation programs are pervasive. But the mobilization of public resources is limited and much of it is wasted in regressive subsidies, while inter-government transfers do not do enough to mitigate spatial inequalities.
Following the serious economic crisis in 2001-02, Argentina mobilized an unprecedented effort to provide income support to the segment of the population most in need. Now, as growth has returned and social indicators recovered to precrisis levels, there is an opening to move from emergency support programs to a more comprehensive, long-term, and sustainable strategy for social protection. The challenge is to design and fully implement a social protection system that has adequate coverage and benefits and is integrated and fiscally and politically sustainable. The analysis contained in this book aimed to contribute to and inform the debate about the future of income support policies in Argentina, taking the views, values, and preferences of the stakeholders and the population as starting points. The research included two innovative efforts to collect and understand the landscape of ideas regarding options for social protection circulating in Argentina: first, an extensive set of consultations with policy makers and practitioners in social policy, mainly at the provincial level; and second, a national, representative opinion survey on the views and perceptions of the population regarding social policy and income support programs in particular.
Published in association with Harper Collins, the completely revised and updated third edition of the Atlas of Global Development vividly illustrates the key development challenges facing our world today. 'This is an excellent, up-to-date source book which will be invaluable for students of, and staff teaching, higher levels of geography .... a clear, concise, easily-accessible and well-illustrated volume.' - Geographical Association, United Kingdom
Beyond Reform argues that economic growth in developing countries is intrinsically tied to the dynamics of production structures, to the specific policies and institutions created to support it, and the creation of linkages among domestic firms and sectors. Avoiding macroeconomic instability is also essential, however, macroeconomic stability is not a sufficient condition for growth. The broader institutional context and the adequate provision of education and infrastructure are essential "framework conditions", but generally do not play a direct role in bringing about changes in the momentum of economic growth.
China should complete its transition to a market economy through enterprise, land, labor, and financial sector reforms, strengthen its private sector, open its markets to greater competition and innovation, and ensure equality of opportunity to help achieve its goal of a new structure for economic growth. These are some of the key findings of China 2030, a joint research report by a team from the World Bank and the Development Research Center of Chinaâ TMs State Council. This report lays out the case for a new development strategy for China to rebalance the role of government and market, private sector and society to reach the goal of becoming a-high income country by 2030.Â Â China 2030 recommends steps to deal with theÂ risks facing China over the next 20 years, including the risk of a hard landing in the short term, as well as challenges posed by an ageing and shrinking workforce, rising inequality, environmental stresses, and external imbalances. The report presents six strategic directions for Chinaâ TMs future: â ¢ Completing the transition to a market economy; â ¢ Accelerating the pace of open innovation; â ¢ Going â œgreenâ ? to transform environmental stresses into green growth as a driver for development; â ¢ Expanding opportunities and services such as health, education and access to jobs for all people; â ¢ Modernizing and strengthening its domestic fiscal system; and â ¢ Seeking mutually beneficial relations with the world by connecting Chinaâ TMs structural reforms to the changing international economy.
This study from the Independent Evaluation Group draws lessons for development and climate change mitigation from the World Bank Group's far-reaching portfolio of projects in energy, forestry, transport, coal power, and technology transfer. Reviewing what has worked, what hasn't, and why, the evaluation's key findings include: Energy efficiency can offer countries direct economic returns that dwarf those of most other development projects, while also reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Tropical forest protected areas, on average, significantly reduce tropical deforestation, preserving carbon and biodiversity. Deforestation rates are lower in areas that allowed sustainable use by local populations than in strictly protected areas. Deforestation rates were lowest of all in indigenous forest areas. For renewable energy projects, long-duration loans have been important in making projects financially viable.. But at prevailing carbon prices, carbon offset sales had little impact on most renewable energy projects' rate of returns, and did not address investors' need for up-front capital. Technology transfer - broadly understood to include diffusion of technical and financial innovations related to low-carbon development - has worked well when the logic of piloting and demonstration is well thought out, and when grants are used to mitigate the risk of pioneering efforts.
Beyond its terrible toll in human lives and suffering, the Ebola epidemic has inflicted a measurable economic impact on West Africa in terms of forgone output, higher fiscal deficits, rising prices, lower real household incomes, and greater poverty. This impact results partly from the health-care costs and forgone productivity associated with being infected, but it is driven principally by the efforts of the uninfected population to avoid exposure ('aversion behavior'). The Economic Impact of the 2014 Ebola Epidemic: Short- and Medium-Term Estimates for West Africa provides a mixed methods analysis of the economic impact, combining theory on the channels of economic impact of the epidemic, economic indicators across sectors in the affected countries, and models of how these economies interact with each other and with the broader world. The result is a quantification of the potential overall magnitude of the economic impact for Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone, as well as for West Africa as a whole. Ebola's short-term economic impact (2014) in the three core countries is on the order of US$359 million in forgone output: That is how much poorer these economies will be than they would have been in the absence of Ebola. Two alternative scenarios are used to estimate the medium-term impact (2015): A Low Ebola scenario corresponds to rapid containment within the three most severely affected countries and limited regional contagion, and a High Ebola scenario corresponds to slower containment in the three core countries with broader regional contagion. The estimates of the output lost as a result of the epidemic in the three core countries for 2015 alone sum to US$97 million under the Low Ebola scenario (implying some recovery from 2014) and US$809 million under the High Ebola scenario. Over the medium term, however, epidemiological and economic contagion are likely in the broader sub-region of West Africa. This report uses a multi-country general equilibrium model to estimate the medium-term impact on output for West Africa as a whole. Under the Low Ebola scenario, the loss in GDP for the sub-region is estimated to be US$2.2 billion in 2014 and US$1.6 billion in 2015. Under the High Ebola scenario, the estimates are US$7.4 billion in 2014 and US$25.2 billion in 2015. These are major regional impacts with global implications. This report will be of particular interest to policy makers and others interested in understanding the broader impact of the Ebola epidemic and in assisting with the subsequent economic recovery.
The countries of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) have been recovering from the global financial crisis, but the recent political turmoil has interrupted the pace of credit and output recovery in many countries. The political turmoil in the MENA region reveals deep-seated frustrations and a sense of political, social, and economic exclusion, especially among the youth. The relatively weak growth performance reflects a combination of insufficient reforms and weak reform implementation, including financial sector reforms. The structural weaknesses of financial sectors imply that access to finance may remain restricted even with a full recovery of credit activity. Therefore, the region's countries face an ambitious reform agenda to revert two decades of relatively poor performance of output and employment growth. Financial development should be a central component of the region's growth agenda. This study reviews the region's financial systems, the severity of the limitations on access to finance, and the main factors behind such limitations. It goes on to provide a road map for expanding access and preserving financial stability.
Since 1984, the World Bank has financed 87 Financial Management Information System (FMIS) projects in 51 countries totaling over US $2.2 billion, of which US $938 million was for FMIS related information and communication technology (ICT) solutions. This study presents the World Bank's experience with these investment operations to share the achievements and challenges observed, and provide guidance for improving the performance of future projects. The report is structured according to four overarching questions: * What historical patterns emerge from World Bank financed Treasury/FMIS projects? This includes an analysis of project scope, cost, duration, design, objectives, and ICT solutions, among other aspects. * How have such projects performed according to various criteria? * What are the key factors that contribute to the success and failure of projects? * What have we learned that could be useful for future projects? The findings of this report are primarily based on the 2010 FMIS Database, which includes 55 closed and 32 active FMIS projects implemented between 1984 and 2010 (7 pipeline projects are also analyzed in some sections). The data was gathered primarily from internal World Bank documents and sources, and complemented with interviews with project teams. The Database contains a rich set of operational data and performance ratings for the benefit of the World Bank task teams, government officials and other specialists involved in FMIS projects. Compared to the previously prepared draft FMIS report in 2003 (Dorotinsky and Cho), this study is based on a broader set of projects and documents in analyzing the performance and outputs of the FMIS projects, and presents more in-depth analysis of the success and failure factors. Based on the findings of the current study, the interventions of the World Bank in the design and implementation of FMIS solutions have been reasonably successful in most countries.
'Gender and Governance in Rural Services' provides policy-relevant knowledge on strategies to improve agricultural and rural service delivery with a focus on providing more equitable access to these services, especially for women. It focuses India, Ethiopia, and Ghana, and focuses on two public services: agricultural extension, as an example of an agricultural service, and on drinking water, as an example of rural service that is not directly related to agriculture but is of high relevance for rural women. It provides empirical microlevel evidence on how different accountability mechanisms for agricultural advisory services and drinking water provision work in practice, and analyzes factors that influence the suitability of different governance reform strategies that aim at making service provision more gender responsive. It presents major findings from the quantitative and qualitative research conducted under the project in the three countries, which are analyzed in a qualitative way to identify major patterns of accountability routes in agricultural and rural service provision and to assess their gender dimension. The book is intended for use by a wide audience interested in agricultural and rural service provision, including researchers, members of the public administration, policy makers, and staff from nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and international development agencies who are involved in the design and management of reform efforts, projects, and programs dealing with rural service provision.
Global Development Finance 2011: External Debt of Developing Countries is a continuation of the World Bank's publications Global Development Finance, Volume II (1997 through 2009) and the earlier World Debt Tables (1973 through 1996). As in previous years, GDF 2011 provides statistical tables showing the external debt of 128 developing countries that report public and publicly guaranteed external debt to the World Bank's Debtor Reporting System (DRS). It also includes tables of key debt ratios for individual reporting countries and the composition of external debt stocks and flows for individual reporting countries and regional and income groups along with some graphical presentations. GDF 2011 draws on a database maintained by the World Bank External Debt (WBXD) system. Longer time series and more detailed data are available from the Global Development Finance 2011 on CD-ROM and the World Bank open databases, which contain more than 200 time series indicators, covering the years 1970 to 2009 for most reporting countries, and pipeline data for scheduled debt service payments on existing commitments to 2017. The database covers external debt stocks and flows, major economic aggregates, and key debt ratios, as well as average terms of new commitments, currency composition of longterm debt, and debt restructurings in greater detail than can be included in the GDF book. The CD-ROM also contains the full contents of the print version of GDF 2011. Text providing country notes, definitions, and source information is linked to each table. World Bank open databases are available through the World Bank's website data.worldbank.org. The Little Data Book on External Debt 2011 provides a quick reference to the data from GDF 2011. For more information on the GDF database, visit http://data.worldbank.org/data-catalog. Global Development Finance 2011: External Debt of Developing Countries is unique in its coverage of the important trends and issues fundamental to the financing of the developing world. This report is an indispensible resource for governments, economists, investors, financial consultants, academics, bankers, and the entire development community.
The eruption of the worldwide financial crisis has radically recast prospects for the world economy. 'Global Economic Prospects 2009: Commodity Markets at the Crossroads' analyzes the implications of the crisis for low- and middle-income countries, including an in-depth look at long-term prospects for global commodity markets and the policies of both commodity producing and consuming nations. Developing countries face sharply higher borrowing costs and reduced access to capital. This will cut into their capacity to finance investment spending-ending a five-year stretch of developing-country growth in excess of 6 percent annually. The looming recession presents new risks, coming as it does on the heels of the recent food and fuel crisis. Commodity markets, meantime, are at a crossroads. Years of fast GDP growth contributed to the rise in commodity prices, while the slowdown provoked by the financial crisis has seen those same prices plummet. However, other factors were also at play, notably a period of low investment in commodity supply capacity during the 1990s due to low prices and reduced demand from the countries of the former Soviet Bloc. In the longer run, slower population growth is expected to ease the pace at which commodity demand grows, while commodity producers are expected to discover sufficient new supplies and improved production techniques to prevent any acute shortages from developing. In part, this is because prices are projected to be higher than they were in the 1990s, which will induce necessary investment in exploration and production by firms. Higher prices will also promote greater conservation and substitution with more abundant alternatives, while policies to limit carbon emissions and boost agricultural investment and the dissemination of efficient techniques will also contribute. This year's 'Global Economic Prospects' also looks at government responses to the recent price boom. Producing-country governments have been more prudent than during earlier booms, and because they have saved more of their windfall revenues, they are less likely to be forced to cut into spending now that prices have declined. The spike in food prices tipped more people into poverty, which led governments to expand social assistance programs. Ensuring such programs are better targeted toward the needs of the very poor in the future will help improve the capacity of governments to respond effectively the next time there is a crisis.
Global growth is expected to be 2.8 percent in 2015, but is expected to pick up to 3.2 percent in 2016-17. Growth in developing countries and some high-income countries is set to disappoint again this year. The prospect of rising borrowing costs will compound the challenges many developing countries are facing as they adapt to an era of low commodity prices. Risks to this outlook remain tilted to the downside. This edition of Global Economic Prospects includes two Special Features that analyze the policy challenges raised by the two transitions in developing countries: the risks associated with the first U.S. central bank interest rate increase since 2006 and the implications of persistently low commodity prices for low-income countries. Global Economic Prospects is a World Bank Group Flagship Report that examines global economic developments and prospects, with a special focus on developing countries, on a semiannual basis (in January and June). The January edition includes in-depth analyses of topical policy challenges faced by developing countries while the June edition contains shorter analytical pieces.
With less than five years left to achieve the MDGs, this year's report looks at the prospects and challenges for reaching the goals. It also examines the great diversity of performance across indicators, countries, and categories of countries to determine the necessary policies to fill the remaining gaps.
Bolivia's informal economic sector is the largest in Latin America and has been attributed to many factors including the burden of regulations, the weakness of public institutions, and the lack of perceived benefits to formality. 'Increasing Formality and Productivity of Bolivian Firms' presents fresh qualitative and quantitative analyses to help understand the reasons why firms are informal and the impact of formalization on their profitability, in order to better inform appropriate policies. A crucial finding of the study is that the impact of tax registration on profitability depends on firm size and the ability to issue tax receipts. The smallest and largest firms have lower profits as a result of tax registration because their cost of formalizing exceeds benefits. The study concludes by recommending policy priorities to increase the benefits of formalization through information, training, access to credit and markets, and business support. Longer-term policy recommendations include simplifying formalization, regulatory, and taxation procedures and reducing their costs, as well as measures to boost the productivity of small and micro firms.
Ce rapport constitue une mise jour de celui réalisé en 2005 et permet d'évaluer l'avancement vers les principaux objectifs de la deuxième phase du Programme d'Investissement de l'Education (PISE) en mettant en lumière à la fois les récents succès du système éducatif malien ainsi que les principaux défis auxquels il devra faire face dans les années à venir. Il a été préparé par une équipe nationale malienne avec l'appui conjoint de la Banque Mondiale et du Pôle d'Analyse Sectorielle en éducation de l'UNESCO/BREDA pour aider le Gouvernement du Mali et ses partenaires au développement dans l'élaboration de la troisième phase (2010-2012) du PISE. Ces résultats ont donc servi de base de discussions à la définition de nouveaux arbitrages pour le système et notamment la faisabilité de certains choix de politique éducative et de leur financement. Les documents de travail de la Banque mondiale sont disponibles à l'unité ou par souscription, en format imprimé ou en ligne sur internet www.worldbank.org/elibrary.
This pocket-sized reference on key development data for over 200 countries provides profiles of each country with 54 development indicators about people, environment, economy, technology and infrastructure, trade, and finance.
The Little Data Book on Climate Change is based on World Development Indicators 2011, the World Bank s premier data publication. It provides a broad overview of climate change data and includes a diverse set of indicators selected from both the global economic and scientific communities. These indicators reflect recognition of the intrinsic relationship between climate change and development, and attempt to synthesize important aspects of current and projected climate conditions, exposure to climate impacts, resilience, greenhouse gas emissions, and the state of efforts to take action. This handy pocket guide is one of seven titles in the World Bank's Little Data Book series, which provides data snapshots of key global development issues. It provides country data for 218 World Bank member countries for more than 50 indicators in a single page. These tables are supplemented by aggregate data for regional and income groupings.
The Little Data Book on Financial Development 2013 is a pocket edition of the Global Financial Development Database, published as part of the work on the Global Financial Development Report 2013: Rethinking the Role of the State in Finance. It contains 38 indicators of financial development in 205 economies, including measures of (1) financial depth, (2) access, (3) efficiency, and (4) stability of financial institutions and markets. Additional variables, historical observations, and links to underlying research are available at www. worldbank. org/financialdevelopment.
This Little Data Book presents tables for over 213 economies showing the most recent national data on key indicators of information and communications technology (ICT), including access, quality, affordability, efficiency,sustainability, and applications.
One of a series of pocket-sized books that provide a quick reference to development data on different topics, 'The Little Data Book on Private Sector Development 2012' provides data for more than 20 key indicators on the business environment and private sector development in a single page for each of the World Bank member countries and other economies with populations of more than 30,000. These more than 200 country pages are supplemented by aggregate data for regional and income groupings.
The Little Green Data Book is a pocket-sized ready reference on key environmental data for over 200 countries. Key indicators are organized under the headings of agriculture, forestry, biodiversity, energy, emission and pollution, and water and sanitation.
Guangdong, a province of over 93 million residents, is located on the southern coast of China, boarding with Hong Kong, China. As China's powerhouse for economic growth and a pioneer of reform and opening up, Guangdong has maintained an annual average GDP growth rate of 13.7 percent over the past three decades. Its historical achievements notwithstanding, Guangdong witnessed increased inequality and regional disparity. To assist the authority in developing a strategy for the new phase of reforms that promotes more inclusive and sustainable growth, Reducing Inequality for Shared Growth in Guangdong Province recommends a three-pillar approach: eliminating absolute poverty, reducing inequality in opportunities, and containing inequality in outcomes. The book also proposes a range of policy actions in these three broad areas. First, to further develop the social assistance program (i.e. the minimum living allowance program ) to address the issue of absolute poverty; Second, to improve income opportunities of the rural poor by better facilitating rural labor migration to non-farming jobs and urban labor markets, deepening rural finance reform, and providing better protection of their rights over land. Third, to invest in people through more equitable access to and financing of social services such as basic education, skills development, and health care. Further reform of the intergovernmental fiscal system is essential to the success of these efforts. This report will be of interest to central and sub-national policy makers, policy implementing agencies, researchers, development partners, and others working on economic and social development in China and in other countries. Guangdong's experience will offer great value to the rest of China and to other countries that are grappling with similar development challenges.
Over the last decade, a policy revolution has been underway in the developing and emerging world. Country after country is systematically providing non-contributory transfers to poor and vulnerable people, in order to protect them against economic shocks and to enable them to invest in themselves and their children. Social safety nets or social transfers, as these are called, have spread rapidly from their early prominence in the middle-income countries of Latin America and Europe increasingly to nations in Africa, Asia and the Middle East - and today, over 130 developing countries have made investments in social safety nets an important pillar of economic development policies. The statistics and analysis in The State of Social Safety Nets 2015 capture this revolution, and reveal it in many dimensions at the country, regional, and international levels. This latest edition of a periodic series brings together a large body of data that was not previously available, drawing on the World Bank's ASPIRE database and other sources. Why have so many countries made a firm commitment to incorporate social safety nets as part of their social and economic policy architecture? Because social safety nets work. This report also reports on the rigorous evidence that demonstrates their impact, and also points the way to making them even more efficient and effective at meeting their development goals. This latest edition of a periodic series brings together a large body of data that was not previously available, drawing on the World Bank's ASPIRE database and other sources to examine trends in coverage, spending, and safety nets program performance.