World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim called on Prime Minister Narendra Modi today as part of the Bank’s efforts to explore ways to support government initiatives on nutrition and renewable energy. The Prime Minister’s Office tweeted a picture of the prime minister with Kim, but no details are immediately available. Kim, who visited an anganwadi centre here yesterday to get a sense of India’s intervention in child nutrition, is also meeting Finance Minister Arun Jaitley. The visit is to review projects and understand first-hand India’s efforts on renewable energy and nutrition, a World Bank statement had said ahead of Kim’s arrival. “India is the world’s fastest-growing economy and also home to 26 per cent of the global extreme poor. This means India has a great opportunity to make strong and sustained inroads to reducing poverty and helping lead the world in ending extreme poverty by 2030,” Kim had said in the statement. Stating that he was “very impressed” with Modi’s reforms, he said his visit would explore how the World Bank could provide knowledge and financing to advance his government’s priorities. “We will do all we can to best support India’s ambitious development agenda,” he added. India is the largest client of the World Bank Group. Between 2015 and 2016, the group lent around USD 4.8 billion to India. This includes USD 2.8 billion from the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), USD 1 billion from the International Development Association (IDA) and a further approximately USD 1 billion in investments from the International Finance Corporation (IFC). As of June 2016, total IBRD and IDA net commitments stood at USD 27 billion (IBRD USD 16 billion, IDA USD 11 billion) across 95 projects. At the end of May 2016, IFC’s India portfolio featured 248 projects, amounting to a committed and disbursed exposure of about USD 4.4 billion.
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