The facility will be established as a Financial Intermediary Fund (FIF) at the Bank, drawing on the Bank’s extensive experience of housing such funds.
According to a World Bank release issued Monday, the Bank and IFC will be the implementing partners, as well as other multilateral development banks that would propose private and public sector activities to be supported by the We-Fi facility.
The United States which initiated the idea for the facility will serve as a founding member along with other donor countries.
“This incredible facility will have a significant impact on women's economic development around the world,” said US President Donald Trump, according to the release.
President Trump described the facility as one that seeks to increase opportunities and economic growth, while addressing unique barriers women entrepreneurs face, adding, “I am proud the United States is helping to lead support of this unprecedented initiative."
World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim said women’s economic empowerment is critical to achieve the inclusive economic growth required to end extreme poverty.
“This new facility offers an unprecedented opportunity to harness both the public and private sectors to open new doors of opportunity for women entrepreneurs and women-owned firms in developing countries around the globe,” he added.
Also speaking at the occasion, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said everyone benefits when women have the resources they need to participate fully in our economies and societies, adding, “our government is determined to help women gain the tools they need to be successful entrepreneurs and leaders. This important investment will help women in developing countries to create jobs, build economies
that work for everyone, and have a real and fair chance at success."
“I am happy that this initiative for women presents real added value. I want to sincerely thank everyone who worked on it, especially the President of the World Bank Jim Yong Kim and Ivanka Trump and others. We can see from the example of this Women’s Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative that the G20 is not just a two-day Summit, but that the G20 is a process,” Chancellor Merkel of Germany said, adding: “And I don’t have the slightest doubt that under the leadership of Jim Kim that these will be truly valuable and productive investments.”
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said women’s active participation in society is one of the pillars of Abenomics. “Women’s empowerment and leadership will diversify and revitalize organization and societies. This facility embodies such belief in developing countries, and is a promising initiative to achieve a society where women shine.”