World Bank pledges $100bn to aid crisis-hit nations

12 November 2008

The World Bank has called for a "coordinated, flexible and fast" response to the global financial crisis after pledging to deliver $100 billion to developing countries hit by deteriorating economic conditions.

Announcing the funding ahead of the G20 summit in Washington DC, the organization said the money will be delivered through the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development over the next three years.

It will go towards boosting trade finance, bank recapitalization and supporting governments facing budget shortfalls. This year alone, lending is expected to almost triple from $13.5 billion last year to over $35 billion.

Meanwhile, the bank has cut its 2009 growth forecast for developing countries from 6.4 percent to 4.5 percent. High-income national economies are expected to shrink 0.1 per cent and the world economy as a whole is projected to grow by just one per cent.

World Bank president Robert Zoellick said: "The response to this crisis must be global, coordinated, flexible and fast."

The G20 countries include the US, Canada, Germany and Japan, as well as the emerging economies of India, China and Brazil.

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