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Press Release No. 00/30
April 16, 2000
International Monetary Fund    
Washington, D.C. 20431 USA

Joint IMF World Bank Implementation Committee for the HIPC Initiative
and the PRSP Program

World Bank President James Wolfensohn and International Monetary Fund (IMF) Acting Managing Director Stanley Fischer today announced the establishment of a Joint IMF/World Bank Implementation Committee (JIC) to coordinate work on two high priority joint Bank/IMF initiatives, the Heavily Indebted Poor Country (HIPC) Initiative and the Poverty Reduction Strategy Papers (PRSP) program.

The JIC will oversee implementation of HIPC and PRSP to ensure that both are implemented smoothly and will provide a means for resolving any differences in approach that may arise. It will monitor progress in implementing both programs, and coordinate the production of regular reports and briefings to the Executive Boards. The JIC will also assist the External Relations departments of both institutions in ensuring consistent and effective external communications.

The Committee, which will become effective May 1, will be co-chaired by Masood Ahmed (Deputy Director of Policy Department and Review Department, IMF) and Kemal Dervis (Vice President of the Poverty Reduction and Economic Management Network, World Bank).

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Terms of Reference
  • The JIC is an initiative of Bank and Fund managements to ensure smooth implementation of the joint HIPC Initiative and PRSP programs.
  • The JIC will be jointly chaired by the Vice President of the Poverty Reduction and Economic Management Network in the World Bank and by a Deputy Director, Policy Development and Review Department in the IMF. It will include members from AFR and a second Regional/Area Department (on a rotating basis), as well as three central policy staff from each institution. It will have a joint Secretariat of two staff. It will liaise closely with other World Bank Vice Presidents and IMF Area and Functional Departments.
  • Operational responsibility for implementing the HIPC Initiative and supporting countries' Poverty Reduction Strategies rests with World Bank Regional Departments and IMF Area Departments. The JIC will be a forum for assuring full coordination of both activities.
  • The JIC will monitor the progress and implementation of the HIPC Initiative and of the PRSP program, including the progress of country cases and their financing. It will coordinate the production of regular reports and/or provide informal briefings to the Boards on the progress under the Initiatives.
  • Regional and Area Departments will ensure that the views of Bank and Fund mission teams are consistent in both the HIPC Initiative and the PRSP program, so that country authorities receive a common, agreed message from the two institutions on the country specific application of both programs. The Committee will seek to ensure consistency in approach both across countries and with the overall objectives of these Initiatives. It will also identify and seek to resolve any differences in approach between Bank and Fund staff that are not satisfactorily resolved at the Regional/Area Department level.
  • The JIC will assist the External Affairs/External Relations Departments of the Bank and the Fund in ensuring the consistency of the overall efforts on external communications including with development partners, in respect of the PRSP program and the HIPC Initiative. This will include the construction of joint/coordinated Bank-Fund PRSP and HIPC Initiative websites. The Committee will, as necessary, coordinate the representation of Bank and Fund staffs at major external events including joint representation of both institutions by one staff member.
  • If the JIC cannot resolve disagreements between the Bank and Fund staffs, the issues should be reported jointly by the Poverty Reduction and Economic Management Network and by the Policy Development and Review Department, in consultation with relevant Regional/Area and Functional Departments, to senior managements in both institutions.

IMF EXTERNAL RELATIONS DEPARTMENT

Public Affairs    Media Relations
E-mail: publicaffairs@imf.org E-mail: media@imf.org
Fax: 202-623-6278 Phone: 202-623-7100