World Bank adds three projects to fulfill pledges to support Yemen
The projects will complement a current World Bank initiative that provides funding for reconstruction efforts across the country.
The latest announcement is the first installment of a pledge made to Yemen by the World Bank at a donor conference last year.
“We pledged $400 million to Yemen at the Riyadh Conference, and we have invested more than half of these funds in less than five months,” said Wael Zakout, the World Bank’s country manager for Yemen.
Zakout went on to say, “The three newly approved projects will be funded by grants from the International Foundation for Development, the World Bank’s partner in supporting the most poverty-stricken countries. They aim to expand the rebuilding of major infrastructure [projects] and improve living conditions for the most impoverished people, who are still suffering from recent crises that have broken out across Yemen.”
The three projects will implement crisis recovery initiatives, install basic education infrastructure for children and improve roads and logistical infrastructure.
The first project, funded by a $100 million grant, will provide cash transfers to 400,000 beneficiaries of the government’s own Social Welfare Fund. This project is expected to last two years.
The second project, named Basic Education II, will use a $66 million grant to enhance the quality of education for primary school students by focusing on reading skills. The project will provide funding to overcrowded schools, rebuild 150 schools and train and employ 700 rural female teachers to promote equal access to quality education for young girls as well as poorer and rural children.
The third project aims to increase the quality of road facilities. Funded by a $40 million grant, it will develop roads in four governorates, Al-Hodeidah, Ibb, Taiz, and Lahj.
The World Bank group pledge of $400 million is one of a number of financial pledges, estimated to total $7.5 billion, that the international community has made in order to support Yemen’s transition. The funds are meant to be used to overcome the country’s budget deficit within the government plan for national reconciliation and to create a stable atmosphere for the transitional process that includes a national dialogue, elections and the drafting of a new constitution.