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Financial Agreements as Treaties

Bank financial agreements with their borrowers are governed by international law (including the rules of the organization). A financial agreement with a borrower other than a member state is insulated from the impact of domestic law through the interdependence of this financial agreement with the accompanying guarantee agreement with the member state, who acts as primary obligor (and not merely as surety) and is therefore a joint debtor.   

Since 1951, the World Bank has registered with the UN Secretariat all its loan/guarantee/credit agreements and IDA grants. Grant agreements (such as GEF grant agreements) have often been registered when co-financing World Bank credits or loans. Other registerable agreements (such as a grant agreement between the World Bank and a member, which is not less registerable than a loan agreement) are not registered for reasons of convenience. As the World Bank is not itself (and cannot be) a UN member, it has no obligation of registration and can therefore exercise a wide degree of discretion in deciding what to register.

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Last updated: 2009-03-12

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