The World Bank is an international financial institution that provides loans to developing countries for capital programs. The World Bank's official goal is the reduction of poverty. According to the World Bank's Articles of Agreement (as amended effective 16 February 1989), all of its decisions must be guided by a commitment to promote foreign investment, international trade, and facilitate capital investment. The World Bank differs from the World Bank Group, in that the World Bank comprises only two institutions: the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) and the International Development Association (IDA), whereas the latter incorporates these two in addition to three more:International Finance Corporation (IFC), Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA), and International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID).
The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) is an international financial institution which offers loans to middle-income developing countries. The IBRD is the first of five member institutions which compose the World Bank Group and is headquartered in Washington, D.C., United States. It was established in 1944 with the mission of financing the reconstruction of European nations devastated by World War II. Together, the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development and its concessional lending arm, the International Development Association, are collectively known as the World Bank as they share the same leadership and staff. Following the reconstruction of Europe, the Bank's mandate expanded to advancing worldwide economic development and eradicating poverty. The IBRD provides commercial-grade or concessional financing to sovereign states to fund projects that seek to improve transportation and infrastructure, education, domestic policy, environmental consciousness, energy investments, healthcare, access to food and potable water, and access to improved sanitation. The International Development Association (IDA) is an international financial institution which offers concessional loans and grants to the world's poorest developing countries. The IDA is a member of the World Bank Group and is headquartered in Washington, D.C., United States. It was established in 1960 to complement the existing International Bank for Reconstruction and Development by lending to developing countries which suffer from the lowest gross national income, from troubled creditworthiness, or from the lowest per capita income. Together, the International Development Association and International Bank for Reconstruction and Development are collectively known as the World Bank, as they follow the same executive leadership and operate with the same staff. The association shares the World Bank's mission of reducing poverty and aims to provide affordable development financing to countries whose credit risk is so prohibitive that they cannot afford to borrow commercially or from the Bank's other programs. The IDA's stated aim is to assist the poorest nations in growing more quickly, equitably, and sustainably to reduce poverty. The IDA is the single largest provider of funds to economic and human development projects in the world's poorest nations. The International Finance Corporation (IFC) is an international financial institution which offers investment, advisory, and asset management services to encourage private sector development in developing countries. The IFC is a member of the World Bank Group and is headquartered in Washington, D.C., United States. It was established in 1956 as the private sector arm of the World Bank Group to advance economic development by investing in strictly for-profit and commercial projects which reduce poverty and promote development. The IFC's stated aim is to create opportunities for people to escape poverty and achieve better living standards by mobilizing financial resources for private enterprise,...
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