WB to prepare strategy for Azerbaijan in new format

Baku, Azerbaijan, May 1
By Emin Aliyev - Trend:

The World Bank will prepare an activity strategy project in Azerbaijan by Q1, 2015, the head of the WB Baku Office Larisa Leshchenko told Trend.

"The strategy will be prepared taking into account the new rules, which are introduced by the World Bank. Now, this document will be referred to as" partnership with the country." Before the development WB prepares the so-called systematic diagnosis of the country - a new product that will be prepared by the bank. This diagnosis is done to identify the key problems, the challenges facing the country," she said.

The work is being done to achieve several objectives determined by the World Bank, according to the Baku Office head.

"First, reduction of deep poverty, and the second - a solution to the equable wealth distribution issue. A new indicator will be applied for determination of the progress on the second direction: population distribution by income level is being prepared and the lower limit - 40 percent - of this distribution is being analyzed. Further, the bank will determine growth of income namely of this category of population and ensure that this growth will not be below average income growth dynamics in the whole country. This figure is extremely important, as the studied population category includes not only needy people, but also those of middle level of revenues, sensitive to a variety of risks , as well as the lower level of the middle class," Leshchenko said.

This analysis will track the country's progress on the above indicators and will help to determine the direction in which further work should be carried out, according to the head WB Baku Office.

"A draft strategy will be developed upon completion of this diagnosis," she added.

Azerbaijan become one of three countries in the Europe and Central Asia (along with Albania and Bulgaria), where a strategy in the new format began to develop on a pilot basis, according to Leshchenko.

"In June, when the first results of diagnostic are available, the consultations involving government agencies, NGOs, academia and so on will be started. The draft report will be prepared, according to our estimates, in September, and then preparation of a WB activities strategy in Azerbaijan will be started. The concept strategy will be ready in approximately November, and the final document- in the first quarter of next year. This document will reflect in it all the studies and the results of the execution of the current strategy," Leshchenko said.

The draft strategy will account for four years, she said.

"At the same time, the year in which the document is being prepared, will also be considered. Thus, the strategy will cover the period from 2015 to 2018 fiscal years," Leshchenko added.

Since Azerbaijan's accession to the World Bank in 1992, the bank has financed over 50 projects worth over $3 million.

Translated by S.I.
Edited by C.N.

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