World Bank President Jim Yong Kim on Tuesday pledged to increase funds for poor people in fragile and conflict-affected states, as part of a new strategy for the global development institution to end poverty.
In a speech at George Washington University, Kim said the fiscal uncertainty in the United States, combined with other sources of volatility in the global economy, could do great damage to emerging markets and developing countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America that have lifted millions of people out of poverty in recent years.
With more than 1 billion people in the world living on less than 1.25 dollars per day, Kim said that extreme poverty was "the defining moral issue of our time."
Kim pledged that the World Bank would direct more funding to fragile and conflict-affected states. He said he hopes to increase the share of IDA core funding -- the Bank's fund for the poorest-- to fragile and conflict-affected states by about 50 percent in the next three years. He also said the IFC, the Bank's private sector arm, also would increase funding by 50 percent over three years for low-income and fragile states.
Increasing commitment to fragile and conflict-affected states is part of a broad strategy the World Bank is adopting to help fight against poverty and boost shared prosperity.
The Washington-based institution will use this strategy to realign the entire organization and identify its priorities. It would also require the Bank to take more risks and commit more resources.