Ethiopia, World Bank Sign 250 Mln USD Financing Agreement to Bolster Basic Social Services

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June 4/2021 ( ENA) The Government of Ethiopia and World Bank today inked a 250 million USD financing agreement in the form of a loan to bolster basic social services.

The objective of the Enhancing Shared Prosperity through Equitable Services Program (ESPES) aims to improve equitable access to essential services for the whole population of Ethiopia by improving results in health, education, and agriculture services.

It will also improve and strengthen the overall decentralized service delivery system in the most poorly performing woredas of the country, according to Ministry of Finance.

The project focuses on promoting the delivery of services such as basic education, primary health care, agricultural extension advice, water, and rural roads through a highly decentralized system.

The choice was made based on a due consideration of the gap in Basic Service Delivery and analysis examining how a decentralized government might respond better to diverse local needs and provide public goods more efficiently than a centralized government.

Building on the lessons learned from previous phases, the program will continue to support the ongoing government efforts to deliver basic services.

ESPES program aims to leverage the government’s broad program of service delivery to promote equity, enhance quality and institutionalize critical systems, especially at the woreda level.

According to the ministry, this additional financing was approved by the World Bank Board of Directors in May 2021.

Minister of Finance, Ahmed Shide, and World Bank Country Director for Ethiopia, Eritrea, Sudan, and South Sudan,Ousmane Dione, signed the agreements.