The World Bank on Wednesday (February 18, 2020) in Washington DC, the United States, approved Nigeria’s digital identity ecosystem project along with five others, aimed at assisting the country to empower citizens, especially marginalized groups, to access welfare-enhancing services.
The National Digital Identity Ecosystem Project is focused on enhancing the national Identity system’s legal and technical safeguards to protect personal data and privacy.
The World Bank approved the six projects to support Nigeria’s development priorities focused on improving immunization, providing an enabling business environment for private sector, expanding the digital economy to promote job creation and increasing capacity of public and private sector on governance, social and environmental safeguards.
“The World Bank is ramping up its support to Nigeria in its efforts to lift 100 million Nigerians out of poverty,” said Shubham Chaudhuri, World Bank Country Director for Nigeria.
“These projects are focused on delivering better services to Nigerian citizens. This means ensuring that children are immunized and sleep under mosquito net, improving rural mobility with better roads and providing citizens with a Unique Identification Number to be able to better target social safety nets,” he stated.
Among the projects approved in the “programme of support in fiscal year 2020” is the Nigeria Digital Identification for Development Project.
A statement by the World Bank explained that the Project “will support the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) to increase the number of persons who have a National Identification Number (NIN) reaching about 150 million in the next couple of years.”
According to the World Bank Statement: “This will enable people in Nigeria, especially marginalized groups, to access welfare-enhancing services. The project will also enhance the ID system’s legal and technical safeguards to protect personal data and privacy.
“This is financed through an International Development Association (IDA) credit of US$115 million and co-financing of US$100 million from the French Agency for Development and US$215 million from the European Investment Bank,” the statement added.
Other projects approved and to be covered in the World Bank programme are:
Immunization Plus & Malaria Progress by Accelerating Coverage and Transforming Services (IMPACT) will strengthen health systems to deliver effective primary health care and improve immunization, malaria control, and child and maternal health in selected states.
Among key results, the project aims to improve vaccination coverage, the percentage of children under five who sleep under insecticide treated nets from 28% to 41% and improve the percentage of women who receive post-natal check-ups from 47% to 55%. The project is financed under concessional terms through an IDA credit of $650 million.
Nigeria Rural Access and Agricultural Marketing Project will upgrade rural roads, improve connectivity and access to local markets and agro-business services in 13 states. In particular, the project will upgrade about 1,600 kilometers of rural roads and improve 65 agro-logistics centers.
These interventions are expected to increase by up to 10% the proportion of population who live within two kilometers of an all-season road. The project is financed through an IDA credit of $280 million, co-financing of $230m from the French Development Agency and $65m from the Government of Nigeria.
Ogun State Economic Transformation Project will catalyze private investment in the state by improving the business-enabling environment, strengthening agri-food value-chains and upgrading skills.
Among some of the key results, the project will support the issuance of 15,000 Certificates of Occupancy, facilitate off-taker arrangements with agribusinesses for up to 40,000 farmers and improve STEM teaching in up to 70% of public secondary schools. This is financed through an IDA credit of $250 million.
Innovation Development and Effectiveness in the Acquisition of Skills Project will strengthen the skills of 50,000 Nigerian students and enhance the capacity of technical teachers to better equip them for jobs in the formal and informal sectors. The project will increase female enrollment rate from 13% to 23% in technical colleges and provide recognized skills and certification to 3,000 youth after completing an informal apprenticeship. This is financed through an IDA credit of $200 million.
Sustainable Procurement, Environmental and Social Standards Enhancement Project (SPESSE) will strengthen capacity in managing procurement, environmental and social standards in the public and private sectors. The project will enhance the skills of 21,240 persons and facilitate certification of 4,000 practitioners in procurement, environment and social standards. It will also ensure that accredited degree programs meet International Best Practice and Good International Industry Practice (GIIP) in these areas. This is financed through an IDA credit of $80 million.
The World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA), established in 1960, helps the world’s poorest countries by providing grants and low to zero-interest loans for projects and programs that boost economic growth, reduce poverty, and improve poor people’s lives.
IDA is one of the largest sources of assistance for the world’s 75 poorest countries, 39 of which are in Africa. Resources from IDA bring positive change to the 1.6 billion people who live in IDA countries. Since 1960, IDA has supported development work in 113 countries. Annual commitments have averaged about $21 billion over the last three years, with about 61 percent going to Africa.