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Report/Evaluation Type:Country-Focused Evaluations
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Turkey CLR Review FY12-16

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Turkey is an upper middle income country with a GNI per capita of USD 9,950 dollars in current US dollars (2015).The government set out its objectives in the Ninth Development Plan for 2007-13 and the 2012-14 Medium-Term Program. Four priorities stood out: (i) pursue sound macroeconomic and structural fiscal policies to maintain stability and reduce vulnerabilities, (ii) improve the investment Show MoreTurkey is an upper middle income country with a GNI per capita of USD 9,950 dollars in current US dollars (2015).The government set out its objectives in the Ninth Development Plan for 2007-13 and the 2012-14 Medium-Term Program. Four priorities stood out: (i) pursue sound macroeconomic and structural fiscal policies to maintain stability and reduce vulnerabilities, (ii) improve the investment climate and labor market to increase competitiveness and create jobs, especially for women and youth, (iii) reform education, health service provision, and social welfare to increase productivity and promote equal opportunity, and (iv) continue reforms of energy and water sectors, and invest in increasing energy efficiency. In support of the government's objectives, the WBG Country Partnership Strategy (CPS) pursued reforms in three areas for enhancing competitiveness and employment, improving equity and public services, and deepening sustainable development. The CPS was extended by one year to include FY16, in part to allow the CPS period to be aligned with the political cycle, as parliamentary elections were scheduled for mid-2015.The CPS supported the government's priorities and was adjusted during the PLR to reflect changing priorities, although the adjustment was not robust enough to reflect economic vulnerabilities. The program areas were selective, but program objectives were unfocused owing to their many dimensions, which diminished the program's impact. Development policy operations and project lending were complemented by economic and sector work and technical assistance; however, the non-lending portfolio was spread thinly over many areas.In Focus Area 1, there was limited progress in increasing domestic savings and enhancing external resilience while progress was mixed on the investment and business climate objective. The objective on sustaining macroeconomic stability, domestic savings, strengthen exports and external resilience had multiple dimensions not reflected in the two outcome indicators that covered a narrow range of the objective. Corporate governance was improved through more extensive firm audits, and enhanced reporting and disclosure requirements. In Focus Area II performance was adequate, with some progress on gender equality and a more inclusive labor market, and evidence of improved equity in the provision of health services. While work remains to be done in health to improve client satisfaction, broad measures of health outcomes show progress in improving health outcomes during the program period. In Focus Area III, good progress was made in increasing the supply of energy and use of renewable energy, mixed progress on improving the sustainability of Turkish cities, and limited achievements in strengthening environmental management and adaptation to climate change.

Moldova CLR Review FY14-17

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Moldova is a small, lower-middle income economy with a GNI per capita of $2,240 in 2015 (a decline from 2014). In 2015, the economy suffered from an adverse external environment, a summer drought, and a banking crisis, but IMF reports that the economy expanded by 4.1 percent in 2016. After 1999, the country has had a high economic growth and significant progress in reducing poverty and boosting Show MoreMoldova is a small, lower-middle income economy with a GNI per capita of $2,240 in 2015 (a decline from 2014). In 2015, the economy suffered from an adverse external environment, a summer drought, and a banking crisis, but IMF reports that the economy expanded by 4.1 percent in 2016. After 1999, the country has had a high economic growth and significant progress in reducing poverty and boosting shared prosperity, with 4.8 percent growth in consumption among the bottom 40 percent in 2009-14, compared with 1.3 percent for the entire population. The 2016 Systematic Country Diagnostic (SCD) notes that the national poverty rate shrank from 26 percent in 2007 to 11 percent in 2014. The poverty reduction in Moldova has been driven largely by remittances and pensions. The country ranked 107 out of 188 countries on the 2015 Human Development Index, representing a very modest improvement from 2010. Moldova’s ranking on the Worldwide Governance Indicators (WGI) declined significantly on Control of Corruption (from around 29 in 2011 to 17 in 2015). IEG ratings are as follows: development outcome was moderately unsatisfactory, and World Bank Group (WBG) performance was fair. Two main lessons from this review: First, that caution is called for in moving rapidly to focus on budget support and results based operations under circumstances where there is concern about the quality of systems and controls in financial management and procurement. Second, that results frameworks would need to be designed with outcome indicators that clearly measure the achievement of the stated objectives, taking into account country context and WBG interventions.

Brazil CLR Review FY12-15

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Brazil is an upper middle-income with a GNI per capita income of $9,990 in 2015. During the review period, Brazil’s annual economic growth declined from 4.1 percent prior to the CPS (2008- 2011) to 0.3 percent during the CPS period (2012-15). This deterioration followed tighter fiscal and monetary conditions during 2010-11 and adverse external trade and financing environments, an Show MoreBrazil is an upper middle-income with a GNI per capita income of $9,990 in 2015. During the review period, Brazil’s annual economic growth declined from 4.1 percent prior to the CPS (2008- 2011) to 0.3 percent during the CPS period (2012-15). This deterioration followed tighter fiscal and monetary conditions during 2010-11 and adverse external trade and financing environments, an unsustainable fiscal stance after 2011, and political instability that undermined investors’ confidence. Reduced growth impacted poverty. Brazil achieved an impressive reduction of extreme poverty rates, from 9.9 percent in 2001 to 2.8 percent in 2014. This reduction was associated with a decline in inequality, from a Gini index of 59.3 in 2001 to 51.4 in 2014. However, as a result of lower growth, poverty increased again in 2015 to about 3.4 percent. The extreme poverty rate in rural areas (9.1 percent in 2013) is higher than in urban areas (3.1 percent in 2013). Brazil’s Human Development Index improved from 0.740 in 2011 to 0.754 in 2014, ranking 79th among 188 countries. Government strategies, most importantly the Growth Acceleration and “Brazil Without Poverty” programs sought to address Brazil’s three key development challenges at the time of CPS preparation. These challenges included the need to accelerate economic growth and strengthen resilience to international shocks; to reduce inequality and offer human development opportunities to all, especially women; and to enhance environmental sustainability and resilience. The CPS was aligned with those strategies and focused on providing support to sub-national governments to help enhance implementation of national policies, while also providing knowledge intensive services at the federal level.

Madagascar CLR Review FY07-13

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This Review covers both Madagascar’s Country Assistance Strategy (CAS, FY07-FY11) and Interim Strategy Note (ISN, FY12-FY13). While the CAS was a joint WBG document, the ISN was an IDA only document. The CAS implementation period was truncated due to the unconstitutional change in regime in early 2009 and the subsequent political crisis. Madagascar is a low-income country with a per capita Show MoreThis Review covers both Madagascar’s Country Assistance Strategy (CAS, FY07-FY11) and Interim Strategy Note (ISN, FY12-FY13). While the CAS was a joint WBG document, the ISN was an IDA only document. The CAS implementation period was truncated due to the unconstitutional change in regime in early 2009 and the subsequent political crisis. Madagascar is a low-income country with a per capita income of $440 and a population of 22.9 million in 2013. Between 2002 and 2008, the economy grew at an average of 5 percent per year. The country’s GDP contracted sharply by 4.0 percent in 2009. With the annual population growth of 2.8 percent, Madagascar experienced consecutive years of negative GDP growth rates per capita with -6.7% percent in 2009, followed by -2.5 percent in 2010, and -1.4 percent in 2011. Absolute poverty in the country measured by $2 PPP per capita per day, rose from an estimated 88.9 percent in 2001 to 92.7 percent of the population in 2005, then declined slightly, but stayed above the 90 percent mark through 2012. The Gini index for Madagascar was at 40. 6 in 2010 but increased to 42.7 in 2012. IEG rates the overall development outcome of the WBG program as Unsatisfactory.

Ethiopia CLR Review FY13-16

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of US$590 (current US$) in 2015. Its economy grew by 9.6 percent annually in real terms during the review period, faster than the Sub-Saharan Africa average (4.0 percent) and the rest of the world (2.6 percent), albeit the growth rate slowed to 6-7 percent in 2015-16 owing to a severe drought. The poverty headcount indicates that 33 percent of the population lived below the international Show Moreof US$590 (current US$) in 2015. Its economy grew by 9.6 percent annually in real terms during the review period, faster than the Sub-Saharan Africa average (4.0 percent) and the rest of the world (2.6 percent), albeit the growth rate slowed to 6-7 percent in 2015-16 owing to a severe drought. The poverty headcount indicates that 33 percent of the population lived below the international poverty line of US$1.90 PPP per day in 2011. Ethiopia is among the most equal countries in the world. Inequality—with a Gini coefficient of 0.33—is low by international and Sub- Saharan Africa standards, and comparable with some OECD countries. Ethiopia made good progress towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) particularly in gender parity in primary education, child mortality, HIV/AIDS, and malaria. The country’s HDI ranking remained broadly at the same level between 2012 (173 out of 187) and 2015 (174 out of 187). Political stability prevailed during the review period, notwithstanding the initial uncertainty created by a change in leadership with the death of the long-serving Prime Minister. IEG rates the overall development outcome as Moderately Satisfactory.

Ukraine CLR Review FY12-16

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Ukraine is a lower middle income country with a GNI per capita of $2,640 in 2015. Leading up to the Country Partnership Strategy (CPS) period, poverty had been declining, with the share of the population below the $5 poverty line decreasing from 46 percent in 2002 to 3.2 percent in 2013, and a GINI index lower than those of peer countries in the ECA region in 2014. During the CPS period, Show MoreUkraine is a lower middle income country with a GNI per capita of $2,640 in 2015. Leading up to the Country Partnership Strategy (CPS) period, poverty had been declining, with the share of the population below the $5 poverty line decreasing from 46 percent in 2002 to 3.2 percent in 2013, and a GINI index lower than those of peer countries in the ECA region in 2014. During the CPS period, Ukraine experienced almost zero growth during 2012-2013 and negative real GDP growth of -6.6 percent in 2014 and -9.9 percent in 2015. Following the Euromaidan demonstration and subsequent political events, a new Government took over in late 2014 and faced several challenges, including maintaining macroeconomic stability and managing a banking crisis. With higher unemployment and a compression of public expenditures, Ukraine experienced increases in poverty rates with the share of the population below the $5 poverty line increasing to 3.3 percent in 2014 and 5.8 percent in 2015. While the economy has stabilized, Ukraine would have to address long-standing structural, governance and anti-corruption issues to achieve sustained growth and shared prosperity. During the CPS period, Ukraine’s ranking in the Worldwide Governance Indicator (WBI) for Control of Corruption deteriorated from 17th percentile in 2011 to 15th percentile in 2014, while the ranking in the Human Development Index has remained at 83rd-84th. IEG rates development outcomes of the CPS as Moderately Unsatisfactory while Focus Area II is rated as Moderately Satisfactory. Of the six CPS objectives, three are rated as Mostly Achieved and three are rated as Partially Achieved. The overall rating takes into account the strength of the evidence in the objectives that were rated Mostly Achieved and the lack of verifiable information in one objective that resulted in its Partially Achieved rating.

Belize CLR Review FY12-15

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Belize is a small and open, upper middle income country that is highly exposed to natural disasters and terms of trade shocks. The country had a population of 359,287 in 2015 with a GNI per capita of US$4,490. The country experienced a decline in its GDP growth from 3.7 percent in 2012 to 1.0 percent in 2015, but the average growth during the review period was 2.5 percent,higher than the LAC Show MoreBelize is a small and open, upper middle income country that is highly exposed to natural disasters and terms of trade shocks. The country had a population of 359,287 in 2015 with a GNI per capita of US$4,490. The country experienced a decline in its GDP growth from 3.7 percent in 2012 to 1.0 percent in 2015, but the average growth during the review period was 2.5 percent,higher than the LAC average of 1.5 percent and at par with the rest of the world. Poverty is a rural phenomenon in Belize, reaching 55 percent compared to 28 percent in urban areas in 2009.Overall, the latest poverty estimates indicate that 42 percent of the population lived in poverty in 2009. Income inequality, as measured by the Gini coefficient increased from 0.42 in 2009 to 0.53 in 2013. In 2015, Belize ranked 103 (of 188 countries) on its Human Development Index compared to its rank of 96 (of 187 countries) in 2012. The government’s medium and long-term development strategies as reflected in the NationalPoverty Eradication Strategy and Action Plan, 2009-2013 (NPESAP), the Medium-Term Development Strategy (MTDS, 2010-2013) and Horizon 2030 articulated the priority areas ofgovernment to include sustainable environment and natural resource management, environment and disaster risk management, macroeconomic and fiscal management, government transparency and accountability, growth and sustainability, and human development. The major challenges the country faced during the CPS period include natural disasters, terms of trade shocks, rising fiscal deficits and debt accumulation. This is the first Country Partnership Strategy (CPS) for Belize following the Bank’s re-engagement in 2009 through an Interim Strategy Note (ISN-FY 09-11), after a long hiatus (2001-2009). The Bank suspended its program in the country in 2001 due to fiscal and governance concerns. The CPS had three focus areas (i) policies and strategies for mainstreaming of natural resources and climate resilience; (ii) institutional capacity strengthening for natural resource management and climate change; and (iii) investments to strengthen climate resilience. The Bank concentrated on achieving sustainable natural resource-based growth and enhanced climate resilience, leveraged its limited IBRD envelope through trust fund resources and collaboration with other development partners.

Vietnam CLR Review FY12-16

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Vietnam is a lower middle income country with a GNI per capita income of $ 1,990 in 2015. During the review period, the country continued to experience rapid GDP growth averaging 5.8 percent, compared to 4.3 percent for the East Asia and Pacific region as a whole. The poverty headcount ratio at national poverty lines (which had been 58 percent in 1993) dropped from 17.2 percent in 2012 to 13. Show MoreVietnam is a lower middle income country with a GNI per capita income of $ 1,990 in 2015. During the review period, the country continued to experience rapid GDP growth averaging 5.8 percent, compared to 4.3 percent for the East Asia and Pacific region as a whole. The poverty headcount ratio at national poverty lines (which had been 58 percent in 1993) dropped from 17.2 percent in 2012 to 13.5 percent in 2014, with the remaining poverty being largely a rural issue (18.6 percent in 2014 versus 3.8 percent in urban areas), and mostly among ethnic minorities. Vietnam’s ranking on the UNDP Human Development Index also continued to improve – from 128th in 2011 to 115th in 2015 – compared to neighboring Lao PDR and Cambodia which are currently ranked around 140th place. However, economic inequality as measured by the GINI index is improving quite slowly – from 38.7 in 2012 to 37.6 in 2014. This is the first WBG Country Partnership Strategy (CPS) for Vietnam after it had become a lower middle-income country in 2009. The CPS was well aligned with the government’s objectives and stated development goals. It supported the implementation of the government’s Socio- Economic Development Strategy (SEDS, 2011-20) as this was operationalized in the Socio- Economic Development Plan (2011-15). The SEDS focused on structural reform, environmental sustainability, and the then emerging issues of macro-economic stability, with three core areas: promoting human resources and skills development, improving market institutions, and infrastructure development. At the time of the CPS, Vietnam had undergone a systemic transformation towards a more market oriented economy and with high economic growth and significant poverty reduction. Vietnam had, however, begun to find it more difficult to maintain high growth levels together with macroeconomic stability, and poverty was increasingly being concentrated in ethnic minority communities. The country’s aspirations to avoid the middle income trap and become a successful middle income country would require strengthening of the economy’s competitiveness, and environmental impacts of development needed to be better managed. In line with these concerns, the WBG through the CPS and the Progress Learning Review (PLR) focused on partnering with Vietnam to help the country achieve success as a middle income country with three focus areas: Competitiveness, Sustainability, and Opportunity. These important aspects - addressed in the CPS program - continue to be relevant, as shown in the 2016 Systematic Country Diagnostic (SCD).

Kosovo CLR Review FY12-16

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Kosovo is a lower middle income country with GNI per capita of $3,702 in 2016. Due to its recent turbulent past, Kosovo is considered a fragile and conflict affected country. About 30 percent of the population lived in poverty and about 10 percent lived in extreme poverty in 2011. Inequality remains high, but has been declining: the Gini coefficient has changed from 31.8 in 2009 to 26.7 in Show MoreKosovo is a lower middle income country with GNI per capita of $3,702 in 2016. Due to its recent turbulent past, Kosovo is considered a fragile and conflict affected country. About 30 percent of the population lived in poverty and about 10 percent lived in extreme poverty in 2011. Inequality remains high, but has been declining: the Gini coefficient has changed from 31.8 in 2009 to 26.7 in 2013. Employment rates are the lowest in Europe: 29.7 percent in 2012 and 28.0 in 2016. The country’s human development index (HDI), at 0.741 in 2015, is one of the lowest in the Balkan region, next to Albania and Bosnia and Herzegovina, both ranked 85th among 188 countries. At the time of the CPS preparation, Kosovo’s key development challenges were to create employment of good quality and mitigate accumulated environmental damage. After the armed conflict ended in 1999, the economy grew at about 6 percent per year until 2009, but growth slowed down to 3.5 percent during 2009-2011 and to 3.2 percent during 2012-2016. An inadequate and inconsistent supply of energy remains the key bottleneck to development. Environmental issues have become more prominent as the mitigation cost rises and the country seeks to meet EU’s environmental standards.

Togo CLR Review FY08-17

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This is a validation of the Completion and Learning Review (CLR) for the World Bank Group’s (WBG) engagement in Togo covering two Interim Strategy Notes (ISNs) for the period, FY08-FY10; and FY12-13. In line with the CLR, IEG does not rate the overall development outcome and the WBG’s performance due to data limitations. After Togo became independent in 1960, income per capita almost doubled Show MoreThis is a validation of the Completion and Learning Review (CLR) for the World Bank Group’s (WBG) engagement in Togo covering two Interim Strategy Notes (ISNs) for the period, FY08-FY10; and FY12-13. In line with the CLR, IEG does not rate the overall development outcome and the WBG’s performance due to data limitations. After Togo became independent in 1960, income per capita almost doubled to reach $534 in 1980, driven by open and market oriented policies, a boom in phosphate prices and efforts towards a more effective public administration. However, these gains were reversed during the next two decades. In the 1980s, the country followed a more inward looking economic policy and, during the 1990s, it entered a period of political tension and economic instability. Togo fell into internal and external debt service arrears including with the World Bank. Political stability returned gradually beginning in the mid-2000s and the international development community returned. Economic growth during the last decade has averaged four percent. Despite a solid growth performance, poverty declined only slightly, from 61.7 percent in 2006 to 55.1 percent in 2015. Income per capita is yet to reach the level the country had achieved in 1980. Togo’s ranking in the Human Development Index has fallen from 95th out of 124 countries in 1980 to 166th out of 187 countries in 2013. Togo recently experienced negative macroeconomic developments that brought the share of public debt over GDP from 32 percent in 2010 to 80.8 percent in 2016 financed by both domestic and external borrowings. Successful efforts at increasing public revenues from 18.8 percent of GDP in 2013 to 21.0 percent in 2015 were not enough to cover fast-growing public investments on infrastructure. Efforts at bringing the fiscal accounts under control are underway. The Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) approved on May 5, 2017, a new three-year arrangement for Togo under the Extended Credit Facility (ECF) for SDR176.16 million to support the country’s economic and financial reforms.