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A Global Alliance
A Global Alliance
UPDATED: September 26, 2010 NO. 39 SEPTEMBER 30, 2010
A Prosperous Association
China and the World Bank celebrate three decades of assistance and shared learning

Partnership Milestones

April 15, 1980: World Bank President Robert McNamara leads the Bank's first official mission to China. Vice Premier Deng Xiaoping says China would like to cooperate with the World Bank, and the China-World Bank Group partnership is formed.

May 15, 1980: The People's Republic of China resumes its membership in the World Bank.

October-December 1980: 32 World Bank staff members make their first economic mission to China and conduct an extensive survey of the Chinese economy. They publish the report "China: Development of the Socialist Economy" based on their findings.

June 23, 1981: The bank's Board of Directors approves its first $200-million loan to China for the University Development Project to finance equipment upgrades and scholarship programs.

July 11-16, 1982: The World Bank co-sponsors the Moganshan Conference near Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province, with East European experts introducing the experience of their reforms.

February-May 1984: The World Bank sends two missions to China to conduct a second major study. Bank experts conclude that a quadrupling of national income by 2000 is possible in certain conditions, which later proves to be correct.

February 1984: The World Bank approves the Lubuge Hydroelectric Project, which is the first to introduce international competitive bidding and triggers a so-called "Lubuge shock wave" to the traditional planning system.

September 2-7, 1985: The World Bank co-sponsors the Bashan Boat Conference, a four-day conference on a boat sailing the Yangtze River from Chongqing to Wuhan where senior government officials and economists learn firsthand about modern market economies and other developing countries.

October 25, 1985: The World Bank opens its resident mission in Beijing, China, headed by Edwin Lim.

April 30, 1988: China signs the Convention on Establishing the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA), making it the 35th MIGA member.

June 30, 1991: China replaces India as the largest IDA borrower, with IDA commitments amounting to $977.8 million that year.

October 1992: The International Finance Corp. (IFC) opens its resident mission in Beijing.

June 30, 1993: China becomes the bank's largest borrower and remains so until the late 1990s. The bank extends a total of $3.17 billion loans/credits for 18 projects that year.

June 1993: The World Bank co-sponsors the Dalian Conference on Economic Re-Centralization and the Emergence of Modern Macroeconomic Management. The conference marks a turning point in the national debate on two major issues: the appropriate degree of economic centralization for China, and the management of aggregate demand in China's semi-reformed economy.

June 15, 1995: The Southwest Poverty Reduction Project is approved, which covers 35 of the poorest counties in Yunnan, Guizhou and Guangxi and benefits 3.5 million poor people. It is China's first multi-province and multi-sector integrated poverty reduction project, as well as the largest poverty reduction project financed by an international institution in the country.

July 1, 1997: Yukon Huang becomes the first Country Director for China based in Beijing.

September 23, 1997: The World Bank/IMF Annual Conferences are held in Hong Kong, China. The World Bank publishes a report entitled "China 2020," which examines China's recent history, current progress and the prospective path for the first two decades of the 21st century.

July 1, 1999: As a result of its impressive growth during the past 20 years, China borrows on IBRD (International Bank for Reconstruction and Development) terms.

May 25-27, 2004: The World Bank organizes the Global Conference on Scaling Up Poverty Reduction in Shanghai.

The conference, hosted by the Chinese Government, brings developing countries together to share ideas on the best ways to boost the global fight against poverty.

May 23, 2006: The World Bank approves its current Country Partnership Strategy for China, 2006-2010, coinciding with China's 11th Five-Year Plan.

December 2007: China makes its first contribution of $30 million to the IDA, representing a change in its role from a support recipient to a contributor.

February 2008: The World Bank appoints Justin Yifu Lin, Director of the China Center for Economic Research of Peking University, as its chief economist.

May 2008: The World Bank and the Chinese Government jointly organize the first China-Africa high-level experience-sharing program.

March 20, 2009: The $710-million Wenchuan Earthquake Recovery Project is signed to support post-earthquake reconstruction in Wenchuan, Sichuan Province.

April 25, 2010: China becomes the third largest shareholder of the World Bank with an increase in its voting power from 2.77 percent to 4.42 percent.

(Source: World Bank Group)

The World Bank Group's current assistance program aims to help:

1. Integrate China into the world economy, by deepening its participation in multilateral economic institutions, reducing internal and external barriers to trade and investment, and contributing to its overseas development efforts

2. Reduce poverty, inequality and social exclusion, by promoting balanced urbanization, sustaining rural livelihoods, and expanding access to basic social and infrastructure services, particularly in rural areas

3. Manage resource scarcity and environmental challenges, through reducing air pollution, conserving water resources and optimizing energy use

4. Deepen financial intermediation, by expanding access to financial services (especially among small and medium-sized enterprises), developing the capital market, managing systemic risks, and maintaining financial stability

5. Improve public and market institutions, by improving firm competitiveness, reforming public sector units, and rationalizing intergovernmental fiscal relations

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