World Bank Group Provides Nearly US$115 Billion in Fiscal Year 2022 to Address Multiple Crises
1. Key concerns
Recently, the World Bank announced its funding commitments to member countries for the Fiscal Year 2022 (FY22: July 1, 2021 to June 30, 2022). The scale of funding provided in FY22 reached a record high of US$114.9 billion, an increase of 4.74% year-on-year. Of this, the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) provided US$33.1 billion in support to middle-income countries and a few higher-income countries; the International Development Association (IDA) provided US$37.7 billion in low or no-interest loans and aid to the world’s poorest countries; the International Finance Corporation (IFC) provided US$32.8 billion in loans; and the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA) provided US$4.9 billion in guarantees to promote foreign direct investment in developing countries.
It is noted that the World Bank has exhausted all remaining funds from the 19th replenishment period of the International Development Association (IDA19) in order to meet the growing funding needs of countries in FY22. The 20th replenishment period (IDA20) will therefore start one year earlier and is expected to provide US$93 billion in sustained financial support for poor countries through June 2025. The resources committed by the IBRD have also been increased.
The total financing provided by the World Bank Group since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic has reached US$272 billion, including US$52.6 billion in the fourth quarter of FY22. Funding provided between April 2022 and June 2023 is expected to reach US$170 billion. A significant portion of this will be used to guarantee food security, including social protection and projects in agriculture, nutrition, water, and irrigation. As part of a comprehensive global response to the current food security crisis, the World Bank has deployed some US$30 billion, of which US$12 billion will be for lending. Since 1 April, the World Bank has identified 32 food-crisis related operations and committed US$5.3 billion in this area.
The World Bank's climate finance continues to grow rapidly in FY22, according to the World Bank Group's Climate Change Action Plan (CCAP) for 2021-2025. The plan is expected to see the World Bank Group commit an average of 35 percent of its financing to climate action each year, with at least 50 percent of climate finance going to support climate change adaptation.
The World Bank’s climate finance totaled a record $26 billion (37% of commitments) in FY22, an 83% increase from $14.2 billion in FY19. At US$12.8 billion in FY22, climate adaptation financing is at an all-time high and represents 49% of climate finance, just below the target of 50%. In addition, as part of the CCAP, the World Bank Group has begun producing Country Climate and Development Reports (CCDRs) to help countries identify the most effective actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and promote climate change adaptation. Reports for Turkey and Vietnam have now been released, and reports for more than 20 other countries are expected to be completed in the coming months.
The World Bank continues to maintain its focus on COVID-19 during FY22. As of June 30, 2022, the World Bank had approved US$10.1 billion for vaccine acquisition and deployment in 78 countries, of which US$4.6 billion was for 42 African countries. More than 600 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been contracted for supply by parties using approved financing, of which 430 million doses have been delivered. The World Bank is also establishing a financial intermediary fund to strengthen pandemic prevention, preparedness and response（PPR）capacities at national, regional and global levels, with a focus on low- and middle-income countries, which will play an important role in expanding the pool of funds, incentivize countries to increase related investments, enhance coordination among partners, and serve as a platform for advocacy.
2. Briefing on COVID-19 Pandemic（Issue No.201）
According to WHO statistics, calculated numbers of confirmed COVID-19 cases and deaths reached 568,773,510 and 6,381,643 by 26 July, 2022. Japan, the United States, Germany, Italy and France are the five countries (regions) with the highest number of new confirmed cases in the past seven days, and Japan, the United States, Germany, Italy and France are the five countries (regions) with the highest number of new deaths in the past seven days.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has updated the global vaccination strategy to address the spread of Omicron subvariants and to further expand the coverage of the population protected by the COVID-19 vaccine. According to the University of Oxford's online research website Our World In Data, the total number of doses of COVID-19 vaccine administered worldwide had reached 12,301,452,886 by 25 July, 2022. On 22 July 2022, the WHO released an updated version of the global COVID-19 vaccination strategy. The report states that approximately 19.8 million lives were saved in the first year of the introduction of vaccine. Through rapid and large-scale global rollouts, more than 12 billion doses of COVID-19 vaccine were administered in every countrie, covering an average of 60% of the population. However, in low-income countries, only 28% of the older people and 37% of health care workers have been vaccinated against COVID-19. 27 of WHO Member States have not yet initiated plans for booster doses, and 11 of them are low-income countries. Therefore, the strategy aims to use primary and booster doses to reduce the probability of death and serious illness in order to protect health systems and maintain the functioning of societies and economies. In achieving the COVID-19 vaccination target, countries should prioritize vaccination of health care workers, the most vulnerable groups and those who are immunocompromised or have underlying conditions.
In terms of national (regional) responses to COVID-19, recent national (regional) measures have varied, with some countries tightening their outbreak control measures and others taking measures to promote COVID-19 vaccination. In the Americas, Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases （NAID）, said on 25 July that a booster shot against BA.5 is the most likely tool to be used in the United States this autumn to deal with COVID-19 pandemic. In Europe, German Justice Minister Marco Buschmann said that nationals may be required to wear masks indoors again this autumn in an effort to curb the spread of COVID-19. The government is making adequate preparations to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic and will finalize its response by the end of July, which is expected to be presented to Parliament in September. Greek Prime Minister Mitsotakis announced that an incentive mechanism for the vaccination against COVID-19 will be set up, offering a prepaid card worth 150 euros (approximately CNY 1,120 yuan) to people aged 18 to 25 years old who receive at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. This prepaid card is the equivalent of a gift card and is reimbursed by the government to cover the cost of travel, air travel, visits to theatre and almost all travel expenses for people on various occasions. In Asia, the South Korean government has issued follow-up measures to prevent the COVID-19 pandemic, expanding the number of health care facilities dedicated to the disease to 10,000, adding another 4,000 beds for treatment, and planning to purchase an additional 940,000 doses of medication this month. Osaka, Japan will declare a state of medical emergency for COVID-19.