WB signs accord to set up Centre of Excellence for Urban Dev

| Updated: October 22, 2017 00:59:01

WB signs accord to set up Centre  of Excellence for Urban Dev

The World Bank (WB) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with four Bangladeshi professional institutions to set up a Centre of Excellence for Urban Development (CEUD) to support cities and its local agencies to improve the lives of citizens.

According to a press release on Thursday, the MoU was signed between the WB and the Bangladesh Institute of Planners (BIP), the Institute of Architects of Bangladesh (IAB), the Institution of Engineers, Bangladesh (IEB) and the Municipal Association of Bangladesh (MAB) at a function in the city on Wednesday.

These institutions have assisted the city corporations and municipalities to prepare and implement multi-year capital investment plans (CIPs).

To date, some 31 urban local governments have prepared their CIPs under the project, the release added.

World Bank acting Country Director for Bangladesh, Bhutan and Nepal Rajashree Paralkar said unplanned and rapid urbanisation has affected liveability in the cities.

"In response to urban governance challenges, this framework will help the urban local bodies become strong, responsive and inclusive local government institutions, which are able to provide better urban services," the WB representative added.

According to the release, the World Bank will provide technical support to the CEUD to improve the performance of the urban local government bodies.

In turn, the CEUD will bring together key stakeholders from the public and private sectors to improve the urban management capacity of urban Local Government Institutions by collaborating, sharing knowledge and providing trainings.

It will also initiate a Young Professional Internship Programme in the urban local governments, said the release.

The Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) has provided a $3.76 million grant to support World Bank's technical assistance for the CEUD as well as to support the objectives of the ongoing Municipal Governance and Services Project (MGSP) and the Third Local Government Support Project (LGSP III).

For MGSP, the WB has committed $410 million to improve municipal governance and basic urban services in district towns and municipalities.

For the LGSP III, the WB has committed $300 million to empower the Union Parishads, the lowest tier local governments with discretionary funds that would enable communities decide and implement local development priorities, the release added.

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