Author(s)World Bank Group
KeywordsFISCAL SYSTEM REFORM
ACCESS TO INFORMATION
LIVES OF WOMEN
FOREIGN DIRECT INVESTMENT
ACCESS TO MICRO-FINANCE
ACCESS TO FINANCE
NATURAL RESOURCE MANAGEMENT
SOCIAL SAFETY NETS
OPPORTUNITIES FOR WOMEN
EQUALITY OF OPPORTUNITY
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AbstractThe Country Opinion Survey in Myanmar assists the World Bank Group (WBG) in gaining a better understanding of how stakeholders in Myanmar perceive the WBG. It provides the WBG with systematic feedback from national and local governments, multilateral/bilateral agencies, media, academia, the private sector, and civil society in Myanmar on 1) their views regarding the general environment in Myanmar; 2) their overall attitudes toward the WBG in Myanmar; 3) overall impressions of the WBG’s effectiveness and results, knowledge work and activities, and communication and information sharing in Myanmar; and 4) their perceptions of the WBG’s future role in Myanmar.
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Financial Sector Development in Africa : Opportunities and ChallengesMaimbo, Samuel Munzele; Beck, Thorsten; Maimbo, Samuel Munzele; Beck, Thorsten (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2013)Africa's financial systems face challenges across many dimensions, as discussed in the report financing Africa: through the crisis and beyond. The analysis in that report was based partly on several detailed background papers that are included in this volume. The next six chapters are written by experts in their respective areas and provide an in-depth analysis of these challenges and present possible solutions. In this introduction, the authors provide an overview of the different chapters and how they are related to each other and the main volume. The three chapters in first part focus on key challenges concerned with access to financial services, including financial and operational deficiencies in the microfinance market, reaping the benefits from the technological revolution of retail banking, and deepening and broadening agricultural finance across Africa. The three chapters thus each cover different aspects with a different focus, ranging from an institutional approach to a focus on innovation as a driver of financial broadening to an important element of financial infrastructure to a specific sector. The second part includes the fourth chapter, it involves documents the sizable need for additional housing in many African countries, based on these countries' continuous population growth and an ongoing urbanization trend. The third part includes fifth chapter, which discuss the repercussions of regulatory reforms in Europe and North America for African regulators as well as local challenges. The fourth part includes the sixth chapter, which is the final chapter of this volume. It discusses the politics of financial sector reform in Africa and, more specifically, the space needed for an activist role for government to help create the markets and coordination mechanisms necessary for financial markets to deepen and broaden.
Finance for All? Policies and Pitfalls in Expanding AccessWorld Bank (Washington, DC, 2012-06-01)This book, finance for all, presents first efforts at developing indicators illustrating that financial access is quite limited around the world and identifies barriers that may be preventing small firms and poor households from using financial services. Based on this research, the report derives principles for effective government policy on broadening access. The report's conclusions confirm some traditional views and challenge others. For example, recent research provides additional evidence to support the widely-held belief that financial development promotes growth and illustrates the role of access in this process. Improved access to finance creates an environment conducive to new firm entry, innovation, and growth. However, research also shows that small firms benefit the most from financial development and greater access-both in terms of entry and seeing their growth constraints relaxed. Hence, inclusive financial systems also have consequences for the composition and competition in the enterprise sector. This report reviews and synthesizes a large body of research, and provides the basis for sound policy advice in the area of financial access. The findings in this report also underline the importance of investing in data collection: continued work on measuring and evaluating the impact of access requires detailed micro data both at the household and enterprise level.
Bringing Finance to Pakistan's Poor : Access to Finance for Small Enterprises and the UnderservedThioro Niang, Cecile; Ahmad, Anjum; Nenova, Tatiana (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2013-06-05)Access to financing is now widely acknowledged as a path to meaningful economic inclusion and reduction in poverty. Policy efforts to increase access to finance in Pakistan have taken time to bear fruit, but now access is indeed expanding quickly in certain financial sectors (microfinance, remittances), albeit from a very low base. Nevertheless, policy measures cannot single-handedly increase financial access; financial institutions' willingness to expand access in Pakistan has been stinted by slow technologic advances, weak legal foundations, and unsuitable financial processes and products. Poor socioeconomic conditions, gender bias, and low levels of basic education and financial literacy remain barriers, but perhaps the single strongest driver of low demand for financial access has been income. The primary purpose of this study is to measure and describe the state of financial service provision to underserved segments of the market in Pakistan, particularly those with low incomes and small enterprises, and to identify ways to improve investment and create inclusive markets that meet the needs of underserved people and enterprises.