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Over $1 bn WB loan for Bangladesh

The global lender says the projects on primary education, multipurpose cyclone shelters, and nutrition would benefit almost 36 million people in different districts.
The Bank’s executive board approved the financing on Tuesday in a meeting in Washington, its Dhaka office said in a statement.
The loan from the Bank’s concessional lending arm, the International Development Association (IDA), carries the usual service charge of 0.75 percent with a 38-year maturity period including six years’ of grace period.
The global lender had earlier, in 2012, withdrawn its funding proposal of the $1.2 billion Padma Bridge, one of Bangladesh’s biggest infrastructure projects in 2012, on alleged corruption charges.
But it approved $1.6 billion worth of loans for various projects in the 2012-2013 financial year and $1.9 billion in the last fiscal.
Of the newly approved amount, $400 million, will be used for additional financing of the ongoing third primary education development program, while $375 million for the multipurpose disaster shelter project.
Income Support Program for the Poorest Project that promotes nutrition will get $300 million.
World Bank Country Director for Bangladesh Johannes Zutt said the three projects “weave a strong story of complementarity in the World Bank’s efforts to create opportunities for the poor.
“(This is done) by using cash transfers for mothers to promote better nutrition at home, helping children take advantage of pre-primary education under the primary education program and providing school infrastructure in vulnerable coastal zones”.
“Directly and indirectly, these operations help ensure that even the poorest children in Bangladesh can achieve their full potential,” he was quoted as saying in a media release.

AGENCY

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