International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes

(See also World Bank; World Bank Group.) The International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) is an autonomous international institution established under the Convention on the Settlement of Investment Disputes between States and Nationals of Other States with more than 140 member states. The convention sets forth ICSID's mandate, organization and core functions. The primary purpose of ICSID is to provide facilities for conciliation and arbitration of international investment disputes. ICSID is one of the five institutions that make up the World Bank Group.

International Development Association

(See also World Bank; World Bank Group.) One of the five World Bank Group entities, the International Development Association (IDA) is one of two organizations that make up the World Bank (the other is IBRD). Established in 1960, IDA aims to reduce poverty in the poorest countries by providing loans and guarantees for programs that boost economic growth, reduce inequalities, and improve people's living conditions.

IDA is one of the largest sources of assistance for the world's 82 poorest countries, 40 of which are in Africa. It is the single-largest source of donor funds for basic social services in these countries. IDA-financed operations deliver positive change for 2.5 billion people, the majority of whom survive on less than $2 a day.

IDA lends money on concessional terms. This means that IDA charges little or no interest and repayments are stretched over 25-40 years, including a 5- to 10-year grace period. IDA also provides grants to countries at risk of debt distress. IDA provides guarantees to help attract private financing. In addition, IDA provides significant levels of debt relief through the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries Initiative and the Multilateral Debt Relief Initiative.

Since its inception, IDA has supported activities in 108 countries. Annual commitments have increased steadily and averaged about $16 billion over the past three years, with about 50 percent of that going to Africa. In fiscal 2014, IDA commitments rose to a record $22.2 billion from $16.3 billion in the previous fiscal year.

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