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Report/Evaluation Type:Project Level Evaluations (PPARs)
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Bangladesh: Strengthening Public Expenditure Management Program - Strengthening Auditor General’s Office (PPAR)

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This is a Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) by the Independent Evaluation Group (IEG) of the World Bank’s project on Bangladesh: Strengthening Auditor General’s Office. The project was selected as part of a pilot initiative by IEG to improve the relevance of the instrument. The PPAR draws lessons from the World Bank’s experience in the context of a challenging public financial Show MoreThis is a Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) by the Independent Evaluation Group (IEG) of the World Bank’s project on Bangladesh: Strengthening Auditor General’s Office. The project was selected as part of a pilot initiative by IEG to improve the relevance of the instrument. The PPAR draws lessons from the World Bank’s experience in the context of a challenging public financial management, governance, and political economy environment. The original project development objectives were to (i) strengthen the institutional arrangements of the Office of the Comptroller and Auditor General (OCAG), (ii) enhance the quality and scope of audits, and (iii) enhance the institutional capacity of the Financial Management Academy (FIMA). Reflecting government reluctance to enact the underlying legal changes required by the operation, the project development objectives were revised in 2014 to (i) strengthen the quality, scope, and follow-up of audits; and (ii) create a cadre of internationally accredited professionals in OCAG. Ratings for the Strengthening Public Expenditure Management Program - Strengthening Auditor General’s Office project are as follows: Outcome was moderately satisfactory, Risk to development outcome was substantial, Bank performance was moderately unsatisfactory, and Borrower performance was moderately unsatisfactory. Lesson from the project include: (1) Inadequate assessment of political economy risks to key reforms contributed to unrealistically ambitious project design and targets, leading to shortcomings in implementation. (ii) The project sought to implement a politically sensitive policy reform through the use of technical assistance. The objective could have been more effectively pursued through a different instrument, possibly a development policy operation. (iii) The ability for a pilot to effectively demonstrate the potential of a new way of doing business requires commitment to a systematic assessment of the pilot experience and the dissemination of lessons learned.

Colombia: Programmatic Productive and Sustainable Cities Development Policy Loans (PPAR)

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This is the Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) for the programmatic Productive and Sustainable Cities Development Policy Loans (DPLs; P130972) intended to support the strengthening of the government of Colombia’s policy framework on productive, sustainable, and inclusive cities. The DPL’s objective was and remains highly relevant to the national policy and sector context, and most of Show MoreThis is the Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) for the programmatic Productive and Sustainable Cities Development Policy Loans (DPLs; P130972) intended to support the strengthening of the government of Colombia’s policy framework on productive, sustainable, and inclusive cities. The DPL’s objective was and remains highly relevant to the national policy and sector context, and most of the project’s prior actions were substantially designed to fulfill the aims of the DPL reform areas. However, the alignments of some prior actions show weaknesses, especially in the area of achieving more sustainable cities, and with the definition of outcomes and their measurement. Ratings for this project are as follows: outcome was satisfactory, risk to development outcome was modest, bank performance was satisfactory, and borrower performance was satisfactory. Several lessons emerged from this assessment of the Colombian DPL series: (i) Tacit assumptions that additional fiscal outlays will be forthcoming to support prior actions in development policy operations (DPOs) can create risks to the sustainability of policy reforms. (ii) When designing prior actions that require local-level implementation, it is important to consider municipal capacity and the time required to enact local-level reforms. (iii) In designing multisectoral DPOs with many prior actions across sectors, which include local implementation requirements, municipal capacity building may be required. (iv) In the context of multisector DPOs, it is critical that prior actions be directly linked to results indicators so a clear line of sight and envisioned impact is identified ex ante, thus supporting a strong design at entry.

Mongolia: Governance Assistance Project (PPAR)

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This Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) evaluates the Governance Assistance Project (GAP) of the International Development Association (IDA) in Mongolia (P170780). The project was approved in March 2006 in the amount of special drawing rights 9.7 million (equivalent to US$14 million), funded by an IDA grant. Following two extensions, it closed on December 31, 2014. This assessment aims Show MoreThis Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) evaluates the Governance Assistance Project (GAP) of the International Development Association (IDA) in Mongolia (P170780). The project was approved in March 2006 in the amount of special drawing rights 9.7 million (equivalent to US$14 million), funded by an IDA grant. Following two extensions, it closed on December 31, 2014. This assessment aims to review whether and how the operation achieved its intended objectives. The PPAR also examines the long-term sustainability of GAP support, such as the extent to which the GAP’s main achievements have been sustained more than four years since the project’s closure. This report provides additional evidence and analysis of relevant data for a more complete picture of the project outcomes and the factors that influenced them. By reviewing developments from 2014 to 2019 (after the project closed), it offers an opportunity for a longer-term perspective on the factors affecting outcomes. Ratings for this project are as follows: Outcome as satisfactory, risk to development outcome was modest, bank performance was moderately satisfactory, and borrower performance was moderately satisfactory. This PPAR offers the following lessons: (i) In a low-capacity environment, introduction of basic technical solutions and application of incremental step-by-step reforms can be an effective strategy. (ii) Implementation risks related to project complexity and multiple government implementing agencies can be successfully managed if there is strong leadership from the core government agency (such as the Ministry of Finance) and an experienced and empowered Project Coordination Unit. (iii) Technical assistance projects with multisectoral coverage require significant supervision support. Lack of budget can limit the ability of the World Bank to provide the specialized technical inputs needed to help the client make better design and implementation choices.

Morocco: First and Second Transparency and Accountability Development Policy Loan (PPAR)

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This Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) assesses two International Bank for Reconstruction and Development loans (First and Second Transparency and Accountability Development Policy Loans, known as Hakama 1 and 2) made to Morocco during 2013–16 and totaling approximately $407 million. The first operation was approved in October 2013 and the second in October 2015. The European Union and Show MoreThis Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) assesses two International Bank for Reconstruction and Development loans (First and Second Transparency and Accountability Development Policy Loans, known as Hakama 1 and 2) made to Morocco during 2013–16 and totaling approximately $407 million. The first operation was approved in October 2013 and the second in October 2015. The European Union and the African Development Bank provided parallel financing in the form of budget support; the European Union and World Bank also provided technical assistance. The development objectives of the loans were to strengthen mechanisms promoting transparency and accountability in the management of public resources, and to support legal reforms fostering open governance in Morocco in line with the new Constitution. Ratings are as follows: Outcome was moderately satisfactory, Risk to development was substantial, Bank performance was moderately satisfactory, and Borrower performance was satisfactory. Lesson from these projects include: (i) Improved knowledge management and better use of knowledge enhance operational quality. (ii) Monitoring and evaluation require attention both at the design stage and during implementation. (iii) Greater transparency and better information management are needed to sustain dialogue as World Bank teams and counterparts change. (iv) It would be helpful to assess a cluster of mutually reinforcing World Bank operations jointly.

Ukraine: First and Second Programmatic Financial Sector Development Policy Loan (PPAR)

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This Project Performance Assessment Report evaluates a programmatic series of two development policy loans (DPLs) to Ukraine of $500 million each that were provided as part of an urgent international effort to assist the country when Ukraine’s financial sector teetered on the edge of collapse in 2014. A perfect storm had affected the financial system when the geopolitical situation had descended Show MoreThis Project Performance Assessment Report evaluates a programmatic series of two development policy loans (DPLs) to Ukraine of $500 million each that were provided as part of an urgent international effort to assist the country when Ukraine’s financial sector teetered on the edge of collapse in 2014. A perfect storm had affected the financial system when the geopolitical situation had descended into deep crisis arising from the Euromaidan political upheaval, the Russian Federation’s annexation of Crimea, and the armed separatist movement in the eastern part of the country that initiated open, armed conflict that at times resembled a full-scale war. The exchange rate virtually halved between the end of 2013 (Hrv 8.13 to 1 U.S. dollar) and the end of 2014 (Hrv 15.8 to 1 U.S. dollar), inflation accelerated to 24 percent, the public sector fiscal deficit exceeded 10 percent of gross domestic product (GDP), and public debt—including guarantees—spiked to 70 percent of GDP. Ratings for the First and Second Programmatic Financial Sector Development Policy Loan are as follows: Outcome was satisfactory, Risk to development outcome was high, Bank performance was satisfactory, and Borrower performance was moderately satisfactory. Lessons from the projects include: (i) Close coordination among donors is critical for DPLs to maximize the effectiveness of a jointly designed reform program. (ii) The design of DPLs needs to focus on all relevant issues, potential weaknesses, and gaps in reform measures. (iii) The presence of task teams in the field can be a critical factor in promoting financial sector reform. (iv) Weak public understanding of financial sector reforms indicates a need to expand outreach efforts to enhance political sustainability. (v) Sustainable reform is difficult to achieve in countries that have corrupt power structures and court systems. Under such circumstances, it is an open question whether World Bank assistance risks providing additional resources for rent seeking rather than support for reforms.

Indonesia: Community-based Settlement Rehabilitation and Reconstruction Project for Central and West Java and Yogyakarta Special Region (PPAR)

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The government of Indonesia committed approximately $600 million to fund the reconstruction and rehabilitation of approximately 255,000 homes in the earthquake-affected areas. Several development partners also contributed funds for a significantly smaller reconstruction initiative. At the government’s request, the World Bank used these additional contributions to create a recipient-executed Java Show MoreThe government of Indonesia committed approximately $600 million to fund the reconstruction and rehabilitation of approximately 255,000 homes in the earthquake-affected areas. Several development partners also contributed funds for a significantly smaller reconstruction initiative. At the government’s request, the World Bank used these additional contributions to create a recipient-executed Java Reconstruction Fund (JRF). The World Bank used the JRF’s resources to create the Community-Based Settlement Rehabilitation and Reconstruction Project (CSRRP) for Central and West Java and Yogyakarta Special Region. The CSRRP’s objective was to assist in meeting the needs of eligible households for earthquake-resistant housing and community infrastructure in the affected areas. These objectives were to be achieved through a community-based approach in which beneficiaries would have a major role in decision-making about reconstruction of their homes and the construction of their communities’ infrastructure. Ratings for the Community-based Settlement Rehabilitation and Reconstruction Project (CSRRP) are as follows: Outcome was moderately satisfactory, Risk to development are modest, Bank performance was moderately satisfactory, and Borrower performance was satisfactory. Key lessons from the experience of the project include the following: (i) A community-based approach to postdisaster reconstruction can be effective and efficient in a context in which there is prior experience and existing institutions and cultural norms that favor it. (ii) Careful attention is essential in deciding who will be assisted financially in reconstructing homes, the amount of assistance to be provided, and the perceived effects and consequences of these decisions. (iii) The disaster resilience of project-provided housing can be undermined by subsequent expansion or enlargement of the housing. (iv) Community settlement or similar development plans may not meaningfully support disaster risk reduction unless these plans meet several essential conditions. (v) Women’s participation in community-driven development is a challenge to ensure when their interests, experiences, and perspectives are not properly considered in a project’s design, for example, through a gender analysis that identifies potential opportunities and obstacles to their meaningful participation in decision-making.

India: Andhra Pradesh and Telangana State Community-Based Tank Management Project (PPAR)

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This Project Performance Assessment Report assesses the development effectiveness of India’s Andhra Pradesh and Telangana State Community-Based Tank Management Project, which was approved in 2007 and closed in 2016. The development objectives of the project were to (i) improve agricultural productivity with the assistance of selected tank-based producers; and (ii) improve the management of tank Show MoreThis Project Performance Assessment Report assesses the development effectiveness of India’s Andhra Pradesh and Telangana State Community-Based Tank Management Project, which was approved in 2007 and closed in 2016. The development objectives of the project were to (i) improve agricultural productivity with the assistance of selected tank-based producers; and (ii) improve the management of tank systems with the assistance of selected water user associations. Ratings for this review are as follows: Outcome was satisfactory, Risk to development outcome was substantial, Bank performance was moderately satisfactory, and Borrower performance was moderately satisfactory. Lessons from this review include: (i) The potential economic benefits from improved irrigation infrastructure cannot be adequately realized by beneficiaries without the coordinated and ongoing support of multiple government agencies and research extension services in agriculture. (ii) Continued support to WUAs in terms of resources and social intermediation, such as through nongovernmental organizations, is key to enhancing their capacity for improved water management in drought-prone areas. (iii) Benefits from increased water availability can be further increased if cropping decisions by smallholder farmers in drought-prone areas are informed by water budgeting and collective governance principles for sustainable use.

Guatemala: Enhanced Fiscal and Financial Management for Greater Opportunities DPL Series (PPAR)

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This Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) evaluates a series of two development policy loans (DPLs) to Guatemala: Fiscal Space for Greater Opportunities ($200 million, P131763), and Enhanced Fiscal and Financial Management for Greater Opportunities ($340 million, P133738). The assessment aims to verify whether the operation achieved its intended outcomes, to understand what worked well Show MoreThis Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) evaluates a series of two development policy loans (DPLs) to Guatemala: Fiscal Space for Greater Opportunities ($200 million, P131763), and Enhanced Fiscal and Financial Management for Greater Opportunities ($340 million, P133738). The assessment aims to verify whether the operation achieved its intended outcomes, to understand what worked well and what did not, and to draw lessons for the future. The objectives of the series were to (i) strengthen tax administration and tax policy, (ii) strengthen budget management and increase the results orientation of public spending, and (iii) improve the management and coordination of social policies. Ratings are as follows: Outcome was moderately satisfactory, Risk to development outcome was high, Bank performance was moderately unsatisfactory, and Borrower performance was moderately unsatisfactory. This Project Performance Assessment Report offers the following lessons: (i) Tax administration and tax policy reforms in the face of major governance issues and long-standing opposition from influential interest groups are unlikely to be successful, even if backed by the World Bank’s analytical support, policy dialogue, and financing. Under these conditions, directly and indirectly targeting the governance issues over a longer period is necessary. (ii) Achieving progress on results budgeting requires strengthening of capacity, political commitment, sound monitoring and evaluation indicators, and cross-agency collaboration. (iii) Achieving results in policy lending requires a sound results framework, a credible theory of change, close linking of objectives with policy actions, and outcome-oriented target indicators.

Vietnam: Water Resources Assistance Project (PPAR)

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When the Vietnam Water Resources Assistance Project (VWRAP) was designed, Vietnam was the world’s second largest rice exporter, but land and labor productivity was relatively low in comparison with neighboring countries. About half of cultivated land was irrigated. Ninety-six percent of the nation’s 7,600 dams were used for irrigation, but the hydraulic infrastructure was deteriorating, and dam Show MoreWhen the Vietnam Water Resources Assistance Project (VWRAP) was designed, Vietnam was the world’s second largest rice exporter, but land and labor productivity was relatively low in comparison with neighboring countries. About half of cultivated land was irrigated. Ninety-six percent of the nation’s 7,600 dams were used for irrigation, but the hydraulic infrastructure was deteriorating, and dam safety monitoring was considered inadequate. A major constraint to improving agricultural productivity was underperformance of the large rice-based flood irrigation systems, because of their outdated infrastructure and institutional design. The government of Vietnam had initiated a broad-based program to modernize agriculture and requested World Bank assistance to finance a project that would introduce innovative approaches to irrigation modernization and address dam safety issues. The project development objectives were to modernize and increase the productivity of Vietnamese agriculture, improve the management of water resources, and reduce dam safety risks.  Ratings for this project are as follows: Outcome was moderately satisfactory, Risk to development outcome was moderate, Bank performance was moderately satisfactory, and Borrower performance was moderately satisfactory. Lessons from the project include: (i) The Project’s close alignment with the government of Socialist Republic of Vietnam’s agriculture reform programs allowed it to pilot innovations that have had enduring policy impacts. (ii) Irrigation modernization is a complex learning process that requires time and a phased approach. (iii) Key results indicators and monitoring and evaluation (M&E) frameworks should be linked to development objectives and a clearly stated theory of change. (iv) For affordability reasons, water user fees may be insufficient to ensure the financial viability of water user groups; in that case, additional sources of funds including subsidies may need to be considered.

Jamaica Economic Stabilization and Foundations for Growth Development Policy Loan (DPL) (PPAR)

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This Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) reviews the Economic Stabilization and Foundations for Growth Development Policy Loan (DPL), approved on December 12, 2013. The objectives of the operation were to improve (i) the investment climate and competitiveness, and (ii) public financial management for sustainable fiscal consolidation. Objectives were highly relevant to country Show MoreThis Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) reviews the Economic Stabilization and Foundations for Growth Development Policy Loan (DPL), approved on December 12, 2013. The objectives of the operation were to improve (i) the investment climate and competitiveness, and (ii) public financial management for sustainable fiscal consolidation. Objectives were highly relevant to country conditions and the need to avoid fiscal insolvency and begin implementing a comprehensive program of stabilization and reform. They were closely aligned with the World Bank’s strategy and government priorities. The design of the operation was substantially relevant to challenges, with policy priorities identified based on significant analytical work and nonlending technical assistance. The theory of change was convincing, with clear links among inputs, outputs, and expected results, although some indicators could have been more outcome oriented and clearer in their relation to objectives. One shortcoming of the design was the ambitious time frame for the implementation of some of the reforms related to investment climate and pensions, given the limited institutional capacity and a realistic assessment of the time needed for major legal reforms. Achievement of both objectives is rated substantial. Under the investment climate objective, reforms targeted improvements in contract enforcement, approval of building permits, and registration of micro, small, and medium enterprises to encourage their participation in the formal sector. Under the public financial management and fiscal consolidation objective, the program targeted progress on pension reform, tax reform, civil service reform, cash management, and public investment management. The impact of all reform actions was measured relative to specific indicator targets, which were substantially achieved or exceeded. These achievements were confirmed by additional quantitative indicators, qualitative gauges, and international benchmarking data. Some reforms, such as those in investment climate and pension reform, took longer than originally envisioned, but they proceeded and deepened over time. Cumulative evidence suggests that the reforms supported by the operation have been sustained and, in several areas, deepened during the past six years. This is reflected in the new development policy financing series supported by the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund Stand-By Arrangement that followed the successful conclusion of the three-year arrangement under the International Monetary Fund’s Extended Funding Facility.