The World Bank is a term used to describe in international financial institution that provides leveraged loans to developing countries for capital programmes/projects. The World Bank has a stated goal of reducing poverty of the global level. The World Bank comprises only two institutions-the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, (IBRD) and the International Development Association (IDA). 

Historical Background: -  The World Bank is one of five institutions created at the Brethenwoods conference of 1944. Although many delegates from different countries attended the conference, the most powerful countries in attendance were the US and Great Britain. Negotiations and decision at the conference were naturally dominated by these two countries.
            Within the first two decades of its inception, the World Bank operated fiscal conservation, that is, a relatively low-level lending policy with strict condition and close syorrisian. At this period also, loans were earmarked for capital projects that would enable the borrower to repay the loan based on the income quadrate by such projects once they are  completed. Such projects include ports, high ways systems, power plants etc.
            Between 1968 and 1980, the Bank shifted income generation meeting the basic needs of people in developing countries. The size and number of loans increased and loan targets expanded to included social services and other related sectors of national economics. Between 1980 and 1989, new leadership at the Bank began a new ideological focus. This because known as period of structural adjustment policies aimed at streamlining the economics of developing countries at the expense of health and social services.
            Critics blamed the structural adjustment programmes of the World Bank for being responsible for reduced health, nutritional and educational levels of terms millions of children in Africa, Asia, Latin, America and other developing areas of the world. 7 critics further argue that the IMF and World Bank’s structural adjustment reforms which include severe budget cuts, privatization and premature trade and finance ralisation prevented developing countries from being able to increase long term public investments. The  consequences of these have been chronic under funding of public health systems. Dilapidated infrastructure, inadequate personnel, poor working conditions and brain drain all of which have combined to   undermine public health especially the fight against HIV AIDS in developing  countries.
Since 1989 however, the World Bank policy has changed in response to criticism from many groups. Environmental groups and NGOs are now incorporated into some of the activities of the World Bank.

The Millennium Development Goals:-   The World Bank’s current focus is on the achievement of the Millennium Development  Goals-MDGs. The major aims here are new policies which encourages lending to “middles income countries at reduced interest rates while the IDA provides low or no interest loans grants to low income countries who have little or no interest loans or grants access to the international credit markets. The Bank now seeks to help developing and the reduction of poverty, including achievement of MDGs by   helping countries develop an environment for investment, jobs and sustainable growth, thus promoting economic growth through investment and enabling the poor to share the fruits of economic growth.

Key elements of the MDGs:
1.         Capacity building:-  This has to do with strengthening governments through the provision of adequate education and proper orientation/enlightenment to officials of government and those who manage the public life of the society including those in the public service, bureaucracy, parastatals and similar establishments.

2.         Infrastructure creation:       Implementation of legal and judicial systems for the encouragement of business, the protection of individual and property rights and the honoring of contracts.

3.         Development of financial systems:         This involves the establishment of strong systems capable of supporting endeavours from micro-credit to financing of large corporate ventures.

4.         Combating corruption:     Since corruption has been established as the greatest enemy of development in many developing countries, the MDGs tries to provide support for countries on their efforts to eradicate corruption.  

5.         Research, consultancy and training:      The World Bank provides effective platform for research on development issues. Those who are interested from every segment of society including the academic, students, government officials, research institution and non-governmental organizations. 

MDGs’ 2015 Target:  he Millennium Development Goals is aimed to achieve the following before 2011.
1.         Tradition of extreme poverty and higher
2.         Achievement of Universal Basic Education
3.         To promote gender equality and woman empowerment
4.         Reduce child mortality and intant deaths
5.         Improve material health
6.         Combat HIV/AIDs and other serious disease.
7.         Ensure the protection of the environment
8.         Develop a global partnership for development.

1.         The free market reform policies which the Bank advocates the often harmful to economic development in weak and uncompetitive economies.  
2.         The World Bank assumption that traditional economic structures must be abandoned in favour of western practices is seen as characteristic. Critics augured that the so-called western model have not provided the much needed solution to many problems confronting developing countries, while some of the traditional methods they seem to detect  have proved more effective in several cases.
3.         There is the assumption that the poor and backward cannot modernize or make progress without money and technical advice form abroad. The feeling is that the poor and backward can still make head way with enough commitment and zeal since the advice and assistance form abroad are often hand to come by or come at a great cost.
4.         There is what involvement in contemporary modes of donor and NGO imperialism which seem to steadily blame the poor for their conditions. The fact that the developing countries have been subjected to decades and centuries of exploitation, imperialism and systematic abuse by the developed countries are conveniently forgotten. There intellectual argue that the under development of the third world countries is a deliberate policy of the western world.
5.         The governance of the world bank is another area that has been vigorously criticized. The world bank represents 186 independent countries that it is run by a small number of countries that wield enormous economic muscle. It follows therefore that the bank is not only a tool in the hands of the powerful but an instrument designed to sustain their economic ideas and interest and foist same on the rest of the world.
6.         The world bank has a dual responsibility that not only contradicts itself but are largely opposed to each other. The world bank is both a political organization and a practical, humanitarian one. As a political organization the bank must meet the demands and needs of donor and lending governments, private capital market, big business and other international profit-oriented organizations and agencies. As  an action-oriented organization, the bank must be neutral, specializing in development aid, technical assistance and loans. When there two interests collide, the humanitarian functions of the organization are bound to suffer.
7.         In the 1990s, the world bank and the IMF forged the “Washington Courensus”. This is a policy that demands all regulation of he economic sector, liberalization of markets, privatization and the down-scaling of government. The idea here is for government to do less while private individuals, companies and big business should do more. The problems here is that the poor and lowly are marginalized while their conditions become more dire.
8.         Some analysis show then the world bank policies has increased poverty, has been detrimental to the environment and public health care and cultural diversity.
9.         The World Bank have been accused of neo-liberalist agenda and imperialist policies. Principal among these is the imposition of policies on developing countries which have been damaging, destructive an anti-development.
10.       The World Bank have been described as an instrument for the promotion of US and western interests in certain regions of the world. The bank president is always a citizen of the US, nominated by the president of the US. The question one may ask is, if the World Bank is an organization of over 180 countries, why should its presidents be citizens of only one country since 1944.
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