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$300-M loan approved by World Bank

Posted on March 21, 2013

THE WORLD BANK yesterday approved a new development policy loan for the Philippines, which it said would support "critical reforms for accelerating inclusive growth."

The $300-million quick-disbursing loan, the institution said in a statement, will be used to support government programs aimed at improving the country’s investment climate, strengthening governance and enhancing poor families’ access to social services.

The Philippines’ strong growth -- the 2012 result of 6.6% topped the government’s 5-6% target -- was cited, along with the government’s commitment to reforms.

"The Philippines is vigorously implementing a comprehensive reform agenda centered in restoring people’s trust in government through improved governance and empowering them to rise above poverty," World Bank Country Director Motoo Konishi was quoted as saying in the statement.

The government also expects to raise the tax to gross domestic product ratio to 14.1%, from 12.1% last year, "to generate more resources for financing important economic and social programs," the bank said.