World Bank finances Rural Livelihoods Project | Daily News

World Bank finances Rural Livelihoods Project

Meeting between government officials and the World Bank team at District Secretariate, Mullaitivu.
Meeting between government officials and the World Bank team at District Secretariate, Mullaitivu.

The Integrated Rural Livelihood Transformation Project (IRLTP) is being formulated to accommodate the government priorities focusing on the rapid economic revival of Sri Lanka. The proposed project aims to restore and develop livelihoods in underserved rural areas in up to 25 districts and to be implemented through the District Secretariats as the government has taken an initiative to have a comprehensive approach on rural development through district implementation mechanism, the World Bank sources said.

This project, that costs US 1 billion, would include activities related to restoring/rehabilitation/protection of productive rural assets, consolidation of rural livelihoods, rural enterprise development etc, a senior official of the World Bank expressed.

The IRLTP will be implemented in Sri Lanka with key lessons learned from the Climate Smart Irrigated Agriculture Project (CSIAP), which began in 2019 with the World Bank financing facility of US 110m to improve productivity and climate resilience of smallholder agriculture in Sri Lanka, is designed to be implemented in six provinces of the dry zone covering 258 Grama Niladhari Divisions of in pre-identified hot spot areas, which are highly vulnerable to climate variations in 11 districts namely Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa, Kurunegala, Puttalam, Kilinochchi, Mullaitivu, Trincomalee, Batticaloa, Ampara, Monaragala and Hambantota, a senior official of the World Bank further added. The Department of National Planning (DNP) jointly with line agencies has developed and submitted a concept for this development programme and it is presently been reviewed by the World Bank, which wishes to have a series of consultations at the district level to consolidate.

Since the proposed implementation mechanism is a novel concept for the World Bank, a number of discussions have been arranged to make them aware of the main functions of the District Secretariats and Divisional Secretariats in terms of development planning and implementation process. Accordingly, Stephen Danyo, Sector Leader for Sustainable Development with S. Manoharan, Senior Consultant (Agriculture, Food & Rural Development), Dr. Athula Senaratne, Senior Agriculture Specialist & Kanishka Balasuriya, Consultant at the World Bank, arrived in District Secretariate, Mullaitivu on 20th this month for a district-level discussion, that was chaired by K. Vimalanathan, District Secretary, Mullaitivu to have constructive dialogue on the planning process, with the key officers including Divisional Secretaries, Planning Directors, District Heads of relevant Departments such as Irrigation, Agriculture, Agrarian Development, Livestock and Dairy Development, Fisheries, Local Government, Rural Development, Forestry, Wildlife, Project Directors of ongoing projects.

This discussion gave the World Bank team to get more understanding of district/ divisional secretariat level contribution for project identification, formulation and implementation and monitoring mechanisms.

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