FACT SHEET: The World Bank, Transparency and Anti-Corruption
January 24, 2011
Issue: Stepping up the game in anti-corruption.
Fact: The World Bank has been leading anti-corruption efforts for over a decade and has closed down projects and whole country programs where there is evidence of corruption.
- Governance and anti-corruption are central to the World Bank’s overall mission – in country programs, sector engagements, and project design and implementation – and the Bank has multiple systems in place to ensure that money is used for its intended purposes.
- We focus on these issues at the country, operational, and global levels.
- The Bank’s Controller's Vice Presidency provides strict financial reporting and analysis.
- Country teams undertake regular and rigorous supervision of Bank-financed projects.
- The Independent Evaluation Group (IEG) reviews the Bank’s work and reports its findings directly to the Board, followed by public disclosure.
- The Bank’s Integrity Vice Presidency (INT) has a highly specialized team of investigators and trained forensic accountants who investigate fraud and corruption allegations, prevent recurrence, and support the capacity of national authorities.
Issue: Increasing transparency.
Fact: The World Bank Group is a Global Transparency Leader.
- The Bank has scored the highest ratings on aid transparency among 30 leading multilateral and bilateral aid agencies, according to a recent study (October 2010) by Publish What You Fund.
- Our new Access to Information policy, drawn from Freedom of Information laws in India and the US, makes the World Bank Group a world leader among multilateral institutions on disclosure.
- Results of more than 100 INT Investigative Reports, Forensic Audit Findings, and Sanctions Board rulings will be publicly disclosed.
Issue: Building a strong anti-corruption office.
Fact: The Bank’s INT unit has doubled the number of staff investigating fraud and corruption in Bank Group operations, and the Bank has debarred over 400 firms and individuals for wrongdoing.
- During FY2010 (July 1, 2009 – June 30, 2010), INT further ramped up its investigative and preventive efforts to reduce the risk of fraud and corruption, while holding wrongdoers accountable for the waste of development funds. INT’s recent work included:
- 117 investigations in FY10, with 45 debarments of firms and individuals for engaging in wrongdoing
- A cross-debarment agreement among the Multilateral Development Banks, so that companies debarred by the Bank Group can no longer seek business from other multilateral development banks (MDBs), closing a loophole in multilateral development programs
- High-profile debarments in the past two years, including UK publisher Macmillan Limited and Siemens AG. As part of its settlement, Siemens agreed to pay $100 million to support global anti-corruption efforts.
- An International Corruption Hunters Alliance bringing together 286 senior enforcement and anticorruption officials from 134 countries, to inject momentum into global anti-corruption efforts.
- The Integrity Vice Presidency also houses a team of risk-prevention specialists, who give advice to project teams on early detection of red flags and strengthening control mechanisms on the ground.
Issue: Protecting IDA funding.
Fact: The Bank’s evaluator determined that the WB’s internal controls were well designed, with a few weaknesses to address “risk” of fraud and corruption.
- In response to the Bank’s action plan, in 2010 the Bank’s evaluator upgraded the Bank’s performance-rating and said the Bank had addressed all areas needing remedial action, and that the few areas still under improvement did not represent a risk to IDA resources.