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Nepal: Reinforcing peace through development

Nepal: Reinforcing peace through development

Nepal: Reinforcing peace through development

Peace Through Development

December 6, 2007 - The World Bank today extended its largest ever support package to Nepal with US$253 million in grants from the International Development Association (IDA). The aim is to improve living conditions through better education, roads, and irrigation, and empowerment among the rural poor.

Susan Goldmark, World Bank Country Director for Nepal said development progress is vital for sustaining peace in the country. “At this critical juncture in Nepal’s history it is very important to demonstrate the impact on the ground. It is time for a peace benefit to emerge.”

Goldmark said inequality and social exclusion are among Nepal’s foremost development challenges. The poverty rate in rural areas is much higher than in urban centers, and inequality and rural-urban disparities are increasing. Everywhere in the country, ethnic groups, low caste ‘dalit’ communities, and women lag behind in terms of incomes, assets, and most human development indicators.“Through improved schools, roads, water provision, and income-generating activities, we hope these projects will help the country step up the delivery of basic services, particularly in areas that have lost over a decade to the conflict,” Goldmark said.

Interview - Country Director talks about Nepal's Development

Susan Goldmark, World Bank Country Director for Nepal talks about Nepal’s Development and Bank's assistance

Susan Goldmark, World Bank Country Director for Nepal
Susan Goldmark
  • - What are the reasons behind this increase in Bank assistance to Nepal? WMV
  • - Why is this such a critical juncture in Nepal's history? WMV
  • - Briefly explain why development is so critical to sustain the peace? WMV
  • - What are the main goals of the new projects? WMV
  • - Nepal’s Three Year Plan plan envisages development spending of US$10 billion. What are the Bank’s priorities for this period? WMV
  • - How would you assess Nepal's development in recent years? WMV

Rural Communities in the Driver’s Seat

Through income-generating activities and community infrastructure projects, the IDA funded Poverty Alleviation Fund (PAF) has reached over 900,000 rural Nepalese in 25 districts since it began operations three years ago. Incomes for beneficiary families have increased by some 15 percent, and water supply, bridges, and sanitation have been provided for more than 32,000 households. The US$100 million IDA grant for second phase of the project (PAF II) will cover all 75 districts in the country, and be accessible to some one million rural households. (Read More »)

Education for all Nepalese

Even during the civil war, Nepal’s education rates rose. Girls enrolled in primary school in equal number to boys, and with expanded educational reforms the country is likely to reach the target of 96 percent net enrolment rate. The US$60 million in additional financing for the IDA funned Education for All Project is designed to further improve access to basic and primary education for children, especially from disadvantaged groups. The project builds on the Community School Support Project, which has helped to significantly improve access of children from disadvantaged communities. (Read More »)

Irrigation for Farming

With 80 percent of the population relying on agriculture for their livelihoods, enhanced irrigation in Nepal is critical to increase incomes and reduce poverty. The US$50 million IDA grant for the Irrigation and Water Resources Management Project aims to improve irrigated agriculture productivity and management of selected irrigation schemes. It seeks to increase availability and reliability of supply of irrigation water, which is expected to lead to higher agriculture productivity and increased cropping intensity. (Read More »)

Access to all-season Roads

Nepal’s road density is well below those of its neighbors in South Asia. Of the75 districts of Nepal, 12 are not yet connected by road and another 14 are linked with seasonal tracks or dirt roads. The US$42.60 million IDA grant for the Road Sector Development Project supports upgrading roads in five hill districts which currently lack all-season road access, which will help improve access to economic centers and social services. It entails upgrading of about 297 km of existing dry-season roads/tracks to all-season standard with sealed gravel pavements selected from a pool of more than 1000 km of prioritized roads. (Read More »)

Additional Resources

- World Bank Program in Nepal
Website maintained by the World Bank Office in Kathmandu, a launching pad to all information on World Bank activities in the country (strategy, projects, publications, etc.) (Read More »)

- Blog - End Poverty in South Asia
Shanta Devarajan, World Bank Chief Economist for South Asia, shares insights about the fight against poverty in the region. (Read More »)

- South Asia: Development Data
A wide range of social and economic measures on South Asia, including links to the World Bank's most important online development databases. (Read More »)

- South Asia: Analysis and Research
Compilation of all the World Bank's publications on South Asia, with 'search' options and links to analysis and research on other South Asian countries. (Read More »)

- World Bank Program in South Asia
Launching pad to all information on World Bank activities in Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka.(Read More »)

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