World Bank

Global recession warning as World Bank cuts economic forecast

It expects the world economy to grow by just 1.7 percent this year - a sharp decrease from the 3 percent it predicted in June.

The report blames a number of factors stemming from Russia's invasion of Ukraine and the impact of the pandemic.

The effects of higher interest rates are picked out as the key challenge for policy makers to overcome.

World Bank president David Malpass said the downturn would be "broad-based" and growth in people's earnings in almost every part of the world was likely to "be slower than it was during the decade before Covid-19".

Samoa receives World Bank grant of US$23.7 million

A total of US$14 million has been committed through the second of a two-part resilience development project series.

This is in addition to US$9.7 million disbursed in May 2022 under the Catastrophe-Deferred Drawdown Option (Cat-DDO) of the first resilience project.

Samoa has drawn on similar funding in the wake of the measles outbreak in 2019, and in March 2020 to bolster the government’s financial capacity to support Covid-19 preparedness and response.

World Bank approves project to support safer, more resilient and reliable transport for Samoa

Samoa has been hit by five major tropical cyclones in the past 30 years, with most of Samoa’s airport terminals and runways, bridges, and roads in coastal areas increasingly at risk to the impacts of sea level rise, storm surges and intense flooding. This includes extreme weather events in 2018 and 2020 that led to flooding in parts of Faleolo International Airport, resulting in severe disruptions to operations, hence the need for this investment.

WTO talks: World Bank opposes COVID-19 vaccine intellectual property waiver

His comments on the subject, made during a call with reporters on World Bank economic forecasts, came as WTO negotiations over the proposed waiver resumed in Geneva.

Asked whether he backs a WTO vaccine IP waiver, which India, South Africa and other emerging market countries argue is needed to expand vaccine access, Malpass said: "We don't support that, for the reason that it would run the risk of reducing the innovation and the R&D in that sector."

Samoa’s Faleolo International Airport completes $102 million tala facelift

The facelift, which cost about $102 million tala was funded by the World Bank.

“Tonight (Tuesday) marks another successful achievement along the Government’s journey towards sustainable development,” said Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi.

There were eight components to the project.

The runway lights which have been in operation since 1987 were replaced and upgraded.

The Air traffic control communications systems were also replaced with newer communication devices.

Fire trucks, rescue boats and generators were also bought to boost services.

Extreme poverty set for first rise since 1998, World Bank warns

The pandemic is compounding the forces of conflict and climate change, which were already slowing poverty reduction, the bank said.

By 2021, this could rise to as many as 150 million, it added.

Extreme poverty is defined as living on less than $1.90 (£1.50) a day.

The projected increase would be the first since 1998, when the Asian financial crisis shook the global economy.

Before the pandemic struck, the extreme poverty rate was expected to drop to 7.9% in 2020.

World Bank assists Samoa's Covid-19 response

Samoa currently has no confirmed cases of the coronavirus but a State of Emergency is in place across the country.

"Protecting Samoan people from Covid-19 is our absolute priority," said Samoa's Finance Minister Sili Epa Tuioti.

Sili said while it was fortunate the country had no cases of the coronavirus, it remained critical the Samoa was as prepared as possible in the event of a confirmed case.

World Bank has no plans to fund bridge linking Samoan islands - report

The Samoa Observer reports an unnamed World Bank official saying the bank did not have any plans to support a proposal for a bridge recently broached by Finance Minister Sili Epa Tuioti in Parliament.

"It is worth mentioning that it is about time the government considered seeking assistance from the World Bank to construct a bridge from Upolu to Manono, Apolima and Salafai," he said in Parliament.

Sili said the idea of a bridge first surfaced four years ago but the World Bank was not interested in funding the undertaking.

World Bank commits support to fight Samoa measles outbreak

With the measles outbreak in Samoa having now killed 70 people – almost all of them children – and more than 4,600 confirmed measles cases, the Samoan Government will draw US$3.5 million from grant funds available under an agreed  Operation that gives the government access to emergency funding in the event of a significant national emergency. This funding will provide the government with additional resources to respond to the measles emergency.

World Bank to prioritise climate change resilience in Pacific

Its vice president for East Asia and the Pacific, Victoria Kwakwa, was in Tonga last week for talks.

Ms Kwakwa said the World Bank was working closely within Australia's Step Up and New Zealand's Pacific Reset programmes.

"We've been working on several things including supporting countries to strengthen their climate change resilience, working to support policy reforms to build their economic resilience and we're also working together on the connectivity agenda," Ms Kwakwa said.

"As you know, this region is very remote, even compared to other small island states."