As of January 1, 2011, purchase orders issued by the World Bank Group carry a “CONFIDENTIAL” marking on the top right hand corner. The inclusion of the marking on the purchase order is one of the steps taken by the World Bank Group as part of their implementation of the World Bank Group’s Access to Information Policy.
The Access to Information Policy positions the World Bank as a transparency leader among multilateral organizations. Underlying the new policy is the principle that the World Bank will disclose any information in its possession that is not on the list of exceptions. The exceptions list covers categories of information whose disclosure could cause harm to specific parties or interests.
Procurement documents such as purchase orders and contracts generated by the World Bank fall under the Corporate Administrative Matters category in the list of exceptions. This means that these documents are marked “CONFIDENTIAL” and their distribution is restricted to those with a need to know.
Please visit the Access to Information website for additional information on the World Bank’s Access to Information Policy.