World Bank to continue with USD 6 bn annual lending support to India

PTI

New Delhi: World Bank group President David Malpass delivers his address on the role of the financial sector in development during the fifth edition of Niti Aayog Lecture Series, in New Delhi, Saturday, Oct. 26, 2019.  (PIB/PTI Photo)

New Delhi: World Bank group President David Malpass delivers his address on the role of the financial sector in development during the fifth edition of Niti Aayog Lecture Series, in New Delhi, Saturday, Oct. 26, 2019. (PIB/PTI Photo)

World Bank President David Malpass on Saturday said the multi-lateral funding agency will continue with USD 6 billion annual lending target for India to support infrastructure development and alleviate poverty.

As many as 97 projects are being currently executed with loan assistance from the World Bank.

“World Bank right now has 97 projects with USD 24 billion committed. So, we expect the programme to continue and to reflect the projects and reforms that were going on in India. May be 5-6 billion dollars (USD) per year,” he told media in an interaction.

With regard to the Ease of Doing Business ranking, Malpass said India has been among top 10 countries in the last three years and it has moved from 140th place to 63rd.

India jumped 14 places to the 63rd position on the World Bank’s ease of doing business ranking riding high on the government’s flagship ‘Make in India’ scheme and other reforms attracting foreign investment.

However, the report flagged that India still lags in areas such as enforcing contracts (163rd) and registering a property (154th).

“Looking forward one area that could be improved ensuring the commercial courts are adequately resourced at district level so that they can deliver judgments faster establishment fast track dispute resolution mechanism. Some countries have small claims courts. This helps people enter into contracts when they know that the contract can be enforced,” he said.

With regard to land management reform, he said this is the area that requires more progress including digitisation of land data which will facilitate buying and selling of land.

The visiting head of the World Bank earlier in the day met Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman.

On his meeting with the prime minister, Malpass said he had a discussion on a range of topics, including infrastructure finance, strengthening of financial sector, regional connectivity and civil services reforms.

“We also spoke about water and skilling. I appreciate the Prime Minister’s vision on these topics,” he said.

PTI