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WB denies withholding $2b from Ethiopia

The World Bank (WB) has dismissed reports suggesting that it would freeze a $2 billion fund to support Ethiopia's economic…

The World Bank (WB) has dismissed reports suggesting that it would freeze a $2 billion fund to support Ethiopia’s economic and political reforms.Local media on Wednesday reported that the World Bank decided to freeze the $2 billion from Ethiopia to influence the horn of Africa nation change its stand over disagreement with Sudan and Egypt over the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD).

The bank in a statement reaffirmed its commitment to continue to work closely with the government of Ethiopia.

In a twitter post, the World Bank Ethiopia Country office said “The World Bank continues to work closely with the Government of Ethiopia and is in full support of the country’s economic reform program and its financing.”

“Our overall financing program in support to Ethiopia development efforts is about US$ 2.9 billion for the first year of IDA-19 cycle. The submission of different projects including the budget support to the World Bank Group’s Board of Executive Directors for discussion and decision in following its normal course” the bank said.

The United States last week announced decision that it would cut its foreign aid assistance to Ethiopia for undisclosed reasons.

An estimated $130 million cut is believed to affect Ethiopia’s programs in counter-terrorism, security, military education and training, and anti-human trafficking – among other programs.

Emergency humanitarian aid including food assistance and health programs won’t be affected by the cut, according to a report by Foreign Policy.

The fund cut aimed to influence Ethiopia and reach an agreement with neighboring Nile nations on its controversial Nile mega dam project.

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