World Bank Board Approves US$40 Million Additional Financing for the Integrated Growth Poles Project in Madagascar

Monday, April 21, 2008

The World Bank Group’s Board of Executive Directors approved today an additional financing in an amount of US$40 million to the Republic of Madagascar for the Integrated Growth Poles Project.
The proposed additional financing would support the project to complete originally-planned activities that have remained un-funded to date. In particular, it would focus on three key areas:
(i) strengthening the business environment especially for the development of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in the regions;
(ii) upgrading roads, ports, urban and community infrastructure and development of clean energy resources;
(iii) enhancing project implementation and local institutions strengthening.
The overall objective of the project is to help provide an adequate business environment to stimulate and lead economic growth in three regional poles in the areas of Antananarivo-Antsirabe, Nosy Be and Taolagnaro (Fort Dauphin). The project became effective in September 2005 and is scheduled to close on December 31, 2010. The original credit amount was equivalent to US$129.8 million.
“The project performance is satisfactory both in terms of achievement of the development objectives and implementation progress” said Ganesh Rasagam, the World Bank Task Team Leader for the project.
The project is being supported directly by the private sector, especially the mining investor, Rio Tinto/QIT Minerals Madagascar (QMM) in Fort Dauphin. Other development partners are also involved both directly and indirectly: the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), the World Health Organization (WHO), the European Union, the Millennium Challenge Account, the African Development Bank and the French Agency for Development.
“This ability to raise partnerships and the very high level of Government ownership and commitment towards the project’s objectives are real strong assets” highlighted Robert Blake, the World Bank Country Manager for Madagascar.

The World Bank