2 Apr 2012

100-million dollar grant approved for Samoa

7:49 am on 2 April 2012

The World Bank says it has approved a grant for 100 million US dollars to Samoa over the next five years under its Country Partnership Strategy.

The Bank's Pacific country director, Ferid Belhaj, says 13 million US dollars is earmarked to improve agricultural competitiveness including construction of a new abattoir on Upolu.

He says other projects are likely to involve telecommunications, energy, fisheries, health and education but spending is not specific yet as flexibility and adaptablility are important.

He says Samoa is vulnerable to both natural and economic shocks and the strategy aims to place the Samoan government ahead of the curve in addressing its problems.

"If there is anything to avoid is to get Samoa in trouble economically. This money is grant money and this money is coming from the World Bank Fund for the most vulnerable countries. So 100 per cent grant, 100 million dollars."

Ferid Belhaj says transparency is a preoccupation with the bank and its partners, and the money is traced every step of the way.