...Ushering in era of improved service and commitment
The World Bank and IFC have inaugurated a common office building in central Accra, bringing together under one roof the skills and expertise of the World Bank Group in Ghana that will foster greater collaboration and provide better service for the country's public and private sector clients, and the general public at large.
The new building, which was opened last week Tuesday, offers sufficient space in Accra to reunite IFC and World Bank staff, who previously were serving governments and private businesses in Ghana and other West African countries from separate locations. The common facilities will allow staff to better coordinate their resources and services in pursuit of the World Bank Group twin goals of ending extreme poverty and promoting shared prosperity. The closer proximity of teams will be leveraged in support of a new global strategy launched by World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim that further encourages a common approach across the World Bank Group.
“I see the new building as a partial materialization of the Banks commitment to work as one institution and as a strong statement of dedication to our partnership with Ghana. The transparent glass exterior should be seen as our invitation to our client governments and the general public to expect not only more efficient, one-stop service, but also to expect a more open, frank and accountable World Bank Group,” said World Bank Resident Representative Yusupha Crookes, who also provides leadership for the Banks teams in Liberia and Sierra Leone.
Mary-Jean Moyo, IFC Senior Country Manager, said, “IFC will build on our work with the World Bank and MIGA by making it easier for teams to collaborate and better serve government and business clients. Ghana is one of the region's most promising markets for investment and ideal location for serving several West African markets. IFC is committed to ensuring that the private sector plays an important role in reducing poverty and increasing prosperity.”
IFCs office in Accra supports activities in Ghana and seven other West Africa countries. Additionally, IFC and MIGA, a member of the World Bank Group that promotes foreign direct investment into emerging economies to support economic growth, have a Business Development partnership. The partnership seeks to leverage complementary products offered by each institution to more effectively advance private sector development in challenging markets.
The new building is located on Independence Avenue in the Ridge suburb of Accra. The structure embodies the spirit of Ghana's independence, and environmental sustainability that reflects the values of the World Bank Group. Building features include green roofing, rain harvesting, natural lighting and cultural and disability friendly components. It sets new standards in the conceptualization and construction of office space and technology in Ghana. An example of the care taken with the space is a decades-old Neem Tree that was preserved in the middle of the grounds around the four-story office structure
To promote increased openness and accountability and better implement the Bank's Access to Information policy, a revamped World Bank Group Knowledge Space is open to the general public in the new building. All public documents such as Project Appraisal Reports, Environ-mental and Social Impact Assessment Reports, Implementation Status Reports, research materials and other analytical works and publications can be accessed free of charge. The Knowledge Space will serve as a foyer for promoting cultural activities and dialogue with stakeholders including government, private sector, women groups, the youth, Civil Society Organizations, Community Based Organizations, Faith Based Organizations, Academia, Parliament, Media and Creative Arts.
Since joining the World Bank Group in September 1957, Ghana has benefited from close to $10 billion in funding, including about $8 billion in grants and interest-free credits to the government, mostly from IDA, and $2.1 billion to the private sector from IFC, in support of a wide range of programs, projects and investments.
About the World Bank Group
The World Bank Group is one of the world's largest sources of funding and knowledge for developing countries. It comprises five closely associated institutions: Inter-national Bank for Recon-struction and Development (IBRD) and International Development Association (IDA), which together form the World Bank; International Finance Corporation (IFC); Multilateral Investment Gua-rantee Agency (MIGA); and International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID). Each institution plays a distinct role in the mission to fight poverty and improve living standards for people in the developing world.