London consultation on the implementation plan of the World Bank’s Governance and Anti-Corruption (G

20 September 2007 | Minutes

19 September 2007

Peter Harold, Head of Operations Policy, World Bank
Sanjay Pradhan, Director of Public Sector Governance, World Bank

Peter and Sanjay first outlined the implementation plan

Highlights of the discussion:

  • There is not a conflict between lending and governance (this is what some board members argued) – there is lending with “an acute awareness of” governance – it is to be integrated into all lending, with demand side built into all projects (ie. consultation in budget monitoring)
  • For Bank country directors in resource-rich countries, “it would be crazy not to” put GAC issues at the heart of their work programme
  • The Bank has committed to creating “external verification mechanisms” to give teeth to various business codes of conduct. They are piloting this in Bihar, but were vague about details (something about the “mobilisation of stakeholders”).
  • For “reluctant clients“, the Bank will “find ways to heighten the awareness of governance issues”, in the hopes that it’s profile will be raised in future PRSPs
  • In the next fiscal year, the IEG will release evaluations of public sector governance work, judicial reform and decentralisation
  • Bank has begun and eager to expand support for sectoral transparency initiatives, following lead of EITI, in, for example, construction (COST?), medicines (META?), forestry
  • There will be more judicial reform work (Sanjay added that “the importance of judicial reform varies with levels of development”).
  • The Bank will not be doing more on media capacity building.
  • The Bank will be encouraging others (not itself, likely bilateral donors like DFID) to take a lead on work to strengthen civil society’s capacity to oversee governance reforms.
  • “Absolutely agree” with argument from a TI audience member that procurement reforms should encourage participation of SMEs
  • After the implementation plan is agreed by the board in October, the “next item on the agenda” of Peter Harold is the review of the Bank’s disclosure policy. He wants to take a “radical approach” and may invite the Global Transparency Initiative to organise the external consultations.

Nb. There will be a review of GAC implementation in a year’s time (IEG to be involved).