Somalia clears arrears to World Bank

MOGADISHU,:- Somalia has cleared its arrears to the International Development Association (IDA), a member of the World Bank Group, completing the process of normalizing its financial relationship with the World Bank Group.

The lender said Somalia has thus fully re-established its access to new resources from IDA and paved the way to receive debt relief under the heavily indebted poor country and multilateral debt relief initiative to promote growth and recovery over the coming years.

Axel van Trotsenburg, World Bank managing director of operations, said the move by Mogadishu lays the foundations for long term economic and social recovery.

“I congratulate the Federal Government on reaching this critical milestone that will allow Somalia to access the strongest possible support from the World Bank Group to improve peoples’ lives,” said Trotsenburg in a statement issued on Thursday evening.

The World Bank said the payment of these arrears was made possible through a 365.9 million U.S. dollar bridge loan from the Norwegian government.

This effort, it said, is part of a comprehensive plan for arrears clearance that also includes the International Monetary Fund and the African Development Bank. Abdirahman D. Beileh, Somali Finance Minister said the clearance of IDA’s arrears is an opportunity to lock in Somalia’s turnaround.

“As we enter this new course, we look forward to strengthening our collaboration with the World Bank Group and building on the pillars we have laid so far to boost the economy and bring prosperity to our people,” said Beileh.

Source: Xinhua