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WB downgrades Punjab project rating to ‘moderately satisfactory’

WB downgrades Punjab project rating to ‘moderately satisfactory’

ISLAMABAD: The World Bank has downgraded the rating of a $100 million project, which it is financing in Punjab to reduce poverty and joblessness, due to the provincial government’s failure to approve a spatial strategy.

Punjab Jobs and Competitiveness Programme for Result has been downgraded to ‘moderately satisfactory’ after its sixth review held recently, according to the World Bank’s Status and Result Implementation Report.

In March 2016, the Washington-based lender had approved $100 million or Rs14 billion (at current exchange rate) under its hybrid financing instrument Programme for Result (PfR). The PfR disbursements are linked with progress on implementation of agreed set of conditions that makes it different from usual budget or project financing.

It is for the first time that the lender has lowered both the ratings on progress towards Achievement of Project Development Objective and Implementation Progress to moderately satisfactory.

Earlier, in February 2017, the World Bank had only cut the rating on Implementation Progress to moderately satisfactory, which was subsequently revised upward.