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World Bank Chief compliments India on its growth rate

Written by: Staff

Washington, Apr 24 (UNI) Lauding India on acheiving an ''impressive'' growth rate, World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz said, it is a very encouraging story of how a very large country with an extraordinary diverse population can make real inroads in poverty reduction and development with democratic system.

''It appeared that Indian officials are not satisfied with the seven per cent growth rate, which they had achieved. But, I must say that is impressive already and I think they are making every effort to do more,'' he said while addressing a press conference on the concluding day of the spring meetings of the Bank and the IMF here yesterday.

Replying to a question on corruption in India, Mr Wolfwotz said it was a problem that affected even the richest countries in the world and could not be eliminated overnight.

''Many of the countries, including India, are dealing with the problem. I have just come back from Indonesia. Dealing with corruption is almost a national occupation from the President to ordinary people in the street there,'' he said.

Stating that India's future strength lies in maintaining macroeconomic stability and deepening reforms, International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Rodrigo de Rato said, ''It also has to do a lot more on infrastructure development and improve the business climate to attract more foreign and domestic investment.'' Commending the process of liberalisation of financial reforms, Mr Dr Rato said, ''Infrastructure is certainly a challenge for the country to improve its business climate to attract more foreign and domestic investment.'' The meeting also discussed how wealthy nations could help developing countries meet their energy needs while protecting the environment. They also examined a report on how development agencies can reinforce good governance and fight corruption.

Mr Wolfowitz said the bank's Development Committee would discuss options for increasing investments to help developing countries meet their energy needs while leaving a smaller environmental footprint.

He also highlighted the enormous need for energy in the developing world, where nearly 1.6 billion people do not have access to electricity.


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