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The World Bank (WB), headquartered in Washington D.C., was founded in 1944 and has since then developed into a powerful engine for fighting poverty in the world.

Today, WB consists of five development institutions; International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, International Development Association, International Finance Cooperation, Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency, International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes. These institutions are working in close cooperation to reduce poverty through sustainable development. Overall, the WB consists of more than 10 000 employees spread across 120 offices worldwide.

As one of the largest financial players in the world, WB’s financial assistance ranges over most business areas and includes projects worldwide. WB is currently involved in more than 1800 projects and has so far this year provided about 52 billion USD in funding and credits. A major characteristic is that over 70% of the companies that win contracts funded by WB are small and medium-sized enterprises.

Business Sweden works continuously to establish and pursue dialogues with a large number of WB’s offices worldwide. This implies that we often incorporate experts and managers from the bank in the various promotion activities that are conducted out in the markets and in Sweden.

For Swedish companies, it is of importance to understand how the bank operates and works in order to get involved in projects that the bank finances at an early stage. WB is often one of the funders behind large projects that are generated in emerging markets, thus has a very important role in running the projects in cooperation with the country in question. The bank often procures consultants for feasibility studies, but for goods and services, it is the implementing party in the country that is the purchaser.

For Swedish companies with the objective to work in projects that the WB is funding, Business Sweden identifies great potential, especially in infrastructure, transport, energy and the ICT-sector. Swedish companies are particularly represented in infrastructure (energy, water and transport) more than in other sectors. Between 2007-2012, Swedish companies have also won more contracts in energy and mining. Overall, there are many upcoming business opportunities for Swedish companies, especially in infrastructure which is a focus area for WB’s long-term strategy. We can also see strong business opportunities in transport, energy and mining as these areas are currently the dominating among upcoming projects.

Business Sweden can support Swedish companies by monitoring relevant and upcoming contracts both through contacts with the contracting authority and the bank. Furthermore, Business Sweden cananalyse business opportunities and decision-making processes or identify suitable partners for the formation of consortia.

If you want to know more about the WB and business opportunities for your company within WB-funded projects, please contact our office in New York.

Read more about WB on: www.worldbank.org