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World Bank disburses 1 bln Euros to Romania

The World Bank (WB) approved yesterday (Tues) an International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) loan of EUR 1 billion for Romania.

The loan will support the Government's commitments under the EU Fiscal Compact, the World Bank said in a communique.

The EUR 1 billion is not drawn immediately by Romania, but rather is available as a fiscal buffer to be called upon if it becomes necessary, and will remain available for the next three years provided Romania follows its macroeconomic and reform programs.

The loan will support reforms which have three aims: enhance the efficiency of public spending and the Government’s revenue-raising capacity through better compliance with tax laws; improve governance of state owned enterprises in the energy and transport sectors to reduce the drain on the budget, generate savings and attract the private capital needed to modernize plants and increase their competitiveness, and pursue the liberalization of energy markets; and enhance the quality of public health care by reducing unjustified outlays and reallocating resources to high-return preventive care and health promotion programs.

"Romania has made good progress in stabilizing the macro-economic and fiscal framework and putting the country on a growth path, despite the challenging economic environment throughout Europe today," said Philippe Le Houérou, World Bank Vice President for Europe and Central Asia. "We commend the new government on continuing the path of stability and confidence through structural reforms, and modernization of the public administration. The Bank is looking forward to continue its partnership with Romania to provide its expertise for sustainable and inclusive growth, and for EU convergence."

The WB loan contributes to the Government’s fiscal buffer created in response to continuing turbulence in export and financial markets. It is following the successful implementation of a series of three Development Policy Loans totaling EUR 1 billion that contributed to Romania’s macroeconomic stabilization and crisis management program as part of a multilateral package of EUR 20 billion co-financed with the International Monetary Fund and the European Commission, in 2009-11.

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