Sri Lanka to get cheaper World Bank credit for several years

Dec 22, 2010 (LBO) – Sri Lanka would get cheap World Bank credit for at least three years, while the country re-builds infrastructure after a 30-year war and moves toward becoming a borrower at near-commercial rates, managing director Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala said. “You have the peace dividend. You have ended the conflict. With inclusive growth, where everybody is included, Sri Lanka has a great opportunity. We see peace. Build on it.” The World Bank announced this month that Sri Lanka would be able to borrow at near-commercial rates from its International Bank for Reconstruction Development (IBRD) in addition to the earlier International Development Association (IDA) credits.

Blend Country

As a so-called ‘blend country’ Sri Lanka would continue to have access to IDA below market rate long-term credits for the time being, while also getting money at higher rates for shorter tenors. Sri Lanka now gets about 175 to 200 million dollars a year from IDA.

“Sri Lanka will continue to have access for three years,” Okonjo-Iweala told reporters in Colombo.

“Now we are opening up access to more commercial, harder term IBRD funds of about, 230 to 265 million a year.

“The government has been seeking half a billion dollars a year (from World Ban