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Public Utility Reform: What lessons can we learn from IEG evaluations in the energy and water sectors?

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Public Utility Reform:
This synthesis provides a review of operationally relevant findings and lessons from World Bank-supported utility reforms in the energy and water sectors, as identified in IEG evaluation products.This synthesis provides a review of operationally relevant findings and lessons from World Bank-supported utility reforms in the energy and water sectors, as identified in IEG evaluation products.

Evaluation of the World Bank Group’s support for electricity supply from renewable energy resources, 2000–2017

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Pictured above: Ain Beni Mathar Integrated Combined Cycle Thermo-Solar Power Plant. Photo credit: Dana Smillie / World Bank
This evaluation assesses the performance of the World Bank Group (WBG) in its support to electricity production from renewable energy resources in client countries over the period 2000 to 2017.This evaluation assesses the performance of the World Bank Group (WBG) in its support to electricity production from renewable energy resources in client countries over the period 2000 to 2017.

Tajikistan: Energy Loss Reduction Project (PPAR)

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This project was approved on June 30, 2005, for a cost of $30.0 million, including an International Development Association credit of $17.9 million. The project cost increased to $48 million after restructuring and additional finance of $18.0 million. The project closed on December 31, 2014, two and a half years later than the originally scheduled date of June 30, 2012. The original objective was Show MoreThis project was approved on June 30, 2005, for a cost of $30.0 million, including an International Development Association credit of $17.9 million. The project cost increased to $48 million after restructuring and additional finance of $18.0 million. The project closed on December 31, 2014, two and a half years later than the originally scheduled date of June 30, 2012. The original objective was, to assist [Tajikistan] in reducing commercial losses in the electricity and gas systems, and to lay the foundation for the improvement of the financial viability of the electricity and gas utilities in a socially responsible manner. In 2012, the project objective was expanded to include, to assist in the viability assessment of the proposed Rogun HEP [hydroelectric project] in Tajikistan. Ratings for the Energy Loss Reduction Project are as follows: Outcome was moderately unsatisfactory, Risk to development outcome was high, Bank performance was unsatisfactory, and Borrower performance was moderately unsatisfactory. Lessons from this project include: (i) The development effectiveness of the World Bank’s continuous sectorwide engagement in a country can be diminished significantly if the risk analysis at project appraisal is not comprehensive and candid and if prompt course corrections are not made during implementation when a major risk is realized. (ii) The World Bank should proactively ensure that a project component that is crucial to achieving the project development objective and is funded through parallel financing arrangements is designed and implemented in an effective and complementary manner. (iii) The World Bank’s convening capacity can contribute to resolving politically complex and technically demanding development issues that cut across national boundaries, by creating a transparent and inclusive consultative process, and marshaling globally recognized expertise.

Rwanda CLR Review FY14-20

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In summary, under the Rwanda CPS for FY14-FY20, the World Bank Group supported the government to address problems in areas and sectors that could help reduce poverty and improve shared prosperity. The CLR’s most relevant lessons are summarized as follows. First, government discipline and leadership enhance the effectiveness of official development assistance and the country’s ability to progress Show MoreIn summary, under the Rwanda CPS for FY14-FY20, the World Bank Group supported the government to address problems in areas and sectors that could help reduce poverty and improve shared prosperity. The CLR’s most relevant lessons are summarized as follows. First, government discipline and leadership enhance the effectiveness of official development assistance and the country’s ability to progress. Second, more qualified people working on financial management, procurement and safeguards is needed to enhance the impact of projects and program. Third, plans for agricultural modernization require considering interactions between the rural and urban labor markets to ensure migrating rural workers have gainful urban employment. Fourth, generating knowledge through ASA can help identify binding constraints and design policy reforms in a timely manner. IEG adds the following lesson: Poor results framework make it difficult to learn from a program’s experience, attribute results to the program and assess its achievements, and build knowledge that can guide future program design and implementation. To assess programs, build knowledge and guide future actions, the WBG needs to ensure CPF Results Frameworks have: (a) a clear and coherent results chain and (b) indicators that can be measured, are useful for assessing the achievement of objectives and are linked to the program’s interventions.. In Rwanda, the CPS results framework has shortcomings that makes it difficult to measure the achievement of some objectives, build knowledge and guide future WBG programs.

Sierra Leone - Completion and Learning Report : IEG Review

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This is a validation of the Completion and Learning Review (CLR) for the World Bank Group’s (WBG) engagement in Sierra Leone covering the Country Assistance Strategy (CAS, FY10-FY13). For completeness and learning purposes, and while the CAS formally expired in FY13, IEG has elected to examine the period FY14-FY19 as well as no CPF was in place to replace the CAS. Owing to data limitations and in Show MoreThis is a validation of the Completion and Learning Review (CLR) for the World Bank Group’s (WBG) engagement in Sierra Leone covering the Country Assistance Strategy (CAS, FY10-FY13). For completeness and learning purposes, and while the CAS formally expired in FY13, IEG has elected to examine the period FY14-FY19 as well as no CPF was in place to replace the CAS. Owing to data limitations and in line with relevant provisions of the Working Arrangements between the Independent Evaluation Group and WBG, IEG’s review does not rate the CAS’s overall development outcome or the World Bank Group’s performance.

Mexico - Completion and Learning Review : IEG Review

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This review of Mexico’s Completion and Learning Review (CLR) of the World Bank Group’s Country Partnership Strategy (CPS) covers the CPS period FY14-FY19 and the Performance and Learning Review (PLR) of January 26, 2017. Mexico is an upper-middle-income country with a gross national income (GNI) per capita (in current US$) of US$9,180 in 2018. During 2014-18, the average annual GDP growth rate Show MoreThis review of Mexico’s Completion and Learning Review (CLR) of the World Bank Group’s Country Partnership Strategy (CPS) covers the CPS period FY14-FY19 and the Performance and Learning Review (PLR) of January 26, 2017. Mexico is an upper-middle-income country with a gross national income (GNI) per capita (in current US$) of US$9,180 in 2018. During 2014-18, the average annual GDP growth rate was 2.2 percent in a show of resilience in the face of a complex external environment. In the first half of 2019, economic growth came to a virtual halt owing to policy uncertainty, tight monetary conditions and budget under-execution as well as slowing global manufacturing activity. Over the longer term, Mexico’s economic growth has been below the level needed to converge toward advanced country economies. The country’s per capita GDP, which is closely related to productivity, stands at 34 percent of U.S. per capita GDP compared with 49 percent in 1980.2 Poverty rates (share of individuals living on less than the 2011 PPP US$1.90 per day poverty line) fell from 3.8 percent of the population in 2016 to 2.2 percent in 2016. There was a small decline in the Gini index from 48.7 percent in 2014 to 48.3 in 2016. IEG’s Country Program Evaluation for Mexico (2018) indicates that Mexico’s multidimensional poverty index for the extremely poor fell from 11.3 percent in 2010 to 7.6 percent in 2016, helping reduce the overall index from 46.1 percent to 43.6 percent. At the same time, income growth of the bottom 40 percent was below the population mean.

Kazakhstan - Completion and Learning Review : IEG Review

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The Republic of Kazakhstan is a land-locked upper middle-income country with a nominal GNI per capita of $7960 in 2017. The country depends on oil, with production and exports of hydrocarbon accounting for 21 percent of GDP and 62 percent of exports in 2017. Average annual GDP growth declined from 6.5 percent during 2006-2011 to 3.6 percent during the CPS period (2012-17), primarily due to Show MoreThe Republic of Kazakhstan is a land-locked upper middle-income country with a nominal GNI per capita of $7960 in 2017. The country depends on oil, with production and exports of hydrocarbon accounting for 21 percent of GDP and 62 percent of exports in 2017. Average annual GDP growth declined from 6.5 percent during 2006-2011 to 3.6 percent during the CPS period (2012-17), primarily due to deteriorating oil prices after 2013. The fall in oil prices reduced the growth of non-oil activities and the associated gains in wages and employment. Per capita GDP grew at 2.1 percent during the CPS period and contributed to reduce the poverty headcount ratio at national poverty line from 5.5 to 2.5 percent of the population between 2011 and 2017. Income distribution improved, with the Gini index falling from 0.28 in 2011 to 0.275 in 2017. The Human Development Index improved from 0.765 in 2010 to 0.800 in 2017. Kazakhstan key development challenges and goals set in the Strategy 2030 and Strategy 2050 include strengthening macroeconomic management (including strengthening of non-oil sources of revenues), reducing the state presence in the economy, strengthening regional economics through infrastructure and agricultural value chains, ensuring equal access to high quality education, enhancing social protection, managing natural resources, policy regarding water resources and improving governance and public sector capacity.

Congo, Republic of - Completion and Learning Review : IEG Review

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The Republic of Congo is a lower middle-income country with a GNI per capita (Atlas method in current $) of $1,480 in 2017. Oil production had been the main driver of growth and source of government revenues, with average annual GDP growth of 5.8 percent during 2008-2012. The poverty headcount ratio at $1.90 per day (2011 PPP, percent of population) had been declining, from 50.2 percent in 2005 Show MoreThe Republic of Congo is a lower middle-income country with a GNI per capita (Atlas method in current $) of $1,480 in 2017. Oil production had been the main driver of growth and source of government revenues, with average annual GDP growth of 5.8 percent during 2008-2012. The poverty headcount ratio at $1.90 per day (2011 PPP, percent of population) had been declining, from 50.2 percent in 2005 to 37 percent in 2011. However, poverty reduction occurred mainly in urban areas, with rural areas experiencing an increase in the poverty rate. There was little change in the Gini coefficient between 2005 and 2011. During the CPS period, oil prices dropped, resulting in a decline in average annual GDP growth to 1.4 percent during 2013-2017. The Systematic Country Diagnostic (2018) for the Republic of Congo estimated the poverty rate to have declined further to 35 percent in 2016. The human development index improved from 0.57 in 2012 to 0.61 in 2017. The overarching objectives of the CPS were to promote economic diversification and improve outcomes in public services with three pillars: (i) competitiveness and employment; (ii) vulnerability and resilience; and (iii) capacity building and governance.

Timor-Leste - Completion and Learning Review : IEG Review

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This review of the Timor-Leste’s Completion and Learning Review (CLR) of the World Bank Group’s (WBG) Country Partnership Strategy (CPS) covers the original CPS period (FY13-FY17), and the Performance and Learning Review (PLR) of 2016. The PLR extended the original CPS period by one year to FY18 in order to synchronize the CPS strategy with the country’s political cycle. Timor-Leste is a lower Show MoreThis review of the Timor-Leste’s Completion and Learning Review (CLR) of the World Bank Group’s (WBG) Country Partnership Strategy (CPS) covers the original CPS period (FY13-FY17), and the Performance and Learning Review (PLR) of 2016. The PLR extended the original CPS period by one year to FY18 in order to synchronize the CPS strategy with the country’s political cycle. Timor-Leste is a lower middle-income country, with an oil dependent economy. With oil reserves running low, the key challenges facing Timor-Leste are to achieve greater economic diversification and diminish reliance on public sector spending. At the beginning of the CPS period, the political environment was stable and oil prices high. The country was affected by a significant fall in oil prices that started in 2013, and political uncertainty adversely affected economic activity in 2017 and for most of 2018, as public expenditures fell by over one third. On the whole, growth was modest compared to East-Asia Pacific region peers, reflecting both the fall in oil prices and the political uncertainty towards the end of the program period.

The Power to Renew: Evaluation of the World Bank Group’s Support to Electricity Supply from Renewable Energy Resources (Approach Paper)

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This report evaluates how effectively the World Bank Group (WBG) has supported clients navigate an evolving market for renewable energy (RE) for supplying electricity to meet energy and environmental needs. It covers a dynamic period from 2000 to 2017 during which RE markets for certain technologies evolved considerably, and there was a marked scale-up of WBG activities in the sector. The Show MoreThis report evaluates how effectively the World Bank Group (WBG) has supported clients navigate an evolving market for renewable energy (RE) for supplying electricity to meet energy and environmental needs. It covers a dynamic period from 2000 to 2017 during which RE markets for certain technologies evolved considerably, and there was a marked scale-up of WBG activities in the sector. The evaluation will help determine the ability of WBG to adjust its interventions to rapidly changing conditions and deliver state-of-the-art RE solutions to clients. The evaluation is being undertaken at a time when both the international community and the WBG are placing considerable importance on RE as a key contributor to addressing global climate change. RE, which supports several global development priorities, is vital to achieving inclusive and sustainable economic growth, as per the Forward Look – A Vision for the World Bank Group in 2030. The primary audience for this evaluation is the WBG Board of Executive Directors and WBG management and operational staff. Other key audiences include development partners—especially bilateral donors and other MDBs, special partners—such as GEF, CIFs, and donors who fund ESMAP and ASTAE, WBG clients across governments and in the private sector, civil society organizations and beneficiaries impacted by the WBG’s RE activities.