• 10.05.2024
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Key takeaways

  • Outcome driven or profit motivated?: The WBG has moved its Roadmap from ‘evolution’ to ‘implementation’, and there is a lot of enthusiasm across WBG staff and Executive Directors (EDs) for their streamlined, private sector driven approach. The new focus on ‘outcome’ with a streamlined Corporate Scorecard sits in contrast to the drive to leverage private finance, provide concessional finance to private partners, and de-risk private sector engagement. Our ‘Big Bank Theory’ briefing pushes against this approach.
  • Continued fossil fuel investments: The WBG says it rarely provides finance for fossil gas, but many at the Bank were surprised to see Recourse’s evidence on the multiple ways in which the WBG continue to support fossil gas and coal lock-in — including via project finance, technical assistance, financial intermediaries, development policy finance, and the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA). We called for the Bank to start an ‘endgame’ for fossil gas.
  • Drive for private renewable projects: The WBG’s dominant approach for transitioning to renewable energy is via large scale, private sector renewable energy projects, including a drive for fossil hydrogen. We showed evidence that the profit motive of such projects are contradictory to climate action, given their negative impacts on people and planet.
  • Squeezed civil society engagement: For example, the Civil Society Policy Forum (CSPF) was reduced to just three days, with very limited participation of World Bank Group (WBG) staff in some energy and climate panels, and the regular meeting with WBG Climate and Energy Directors was squeezed to only 1.5 hours.
Asia Fossil Gas Red-Flag Map