WORLD  BANK  VOWS  FULL  SUPPORT  FOR  GMA'S  PROGRAM, AGENDA

MANILA, July 20 , 2004 (STAR) The World Bank has pledged full support for the programs of President Arroyo’s administration.

"We offer you one hundred percent support for your programs and agenda," World Bank Country Director for the Philippines Joachim von Amsberg told the President yesterday during a courtesy call at Malacañang.

"We can do much more for the Philippines in terms of support, but you really have to go on first with important measures," von Amsberg added.

The President welcomed a suggestion by von Amsberg for a seminar-forum in the Philippines that will have in attendance former world leaders whose countries also faced fiscal difficulties like a budget deficit.

She asked von Amsberg to conceptualize the idea so that it can be implemented after her State of the Nation Address (SONA) on July 26.

The President also instructed Finance Secretary Anita Amatong to tap former President Fidel V. Ramos to coordinate with the world leaders who would attend the seminar-forum.

The President discussed with the World Bank executive her 10-point pro-poor program, placing emphasis on the construction of school buildings, electrication and water for all and the people’s credit finance cooperative.

She also told von Amsberg her government has focused on agriculture, particularly on irrigation.

The World Bank country director arrived three weeks ago and expressed satisfaction with the social welfare situation in Cebu and Mindanao which he has already visited.

Joachim von Amsberg joined the World Bank in 1993 and rose to become country anchor at the World Bank headquarters in Latin America and the Caribbean. His country experience includes India, Brazil, Chile, Paraguay, Argentina, Egypt, Arab Republic, Europe-Part I and North America.

He has a PhD in Finance/´Economic Policy from the University of British Columbia, an MS in Electrical Engineering from the Technische Universitaet Berlin, and an MBA, major in Finance, also from the University of British Columbia.


Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi

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