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Implementation Completion Report (ICR) Review - SIMPLIFIED - Bo-social Sector Programmatic Credit

1. Project Data:   
ICR Review Date Posted:
Project Name:
SIMPLIFIED - Bo-social Sector Programmatic Credit
Project Costs(US $M)
 25.0  25.0
Loan/Credit (US $M)
 25.0  25.0
Sector, Major Sect.:
General public administration sector, General education sector, Health, Other social services, General water sanitation and flood protection sector,
Law and justice and public administration; Education; Health and other social services; Health and other social services; Water sanitation and flood protection
Cofinancing (US $M)
 0  0
L/C Number:
Board Approval (FY)
Partners involved
Closing Date
12/31/2004 12/31/2004
Evaluator: Panel Reviewer: Group Manager: Group:  
Howard Nial White
Kris Hallberg Alain A. Barbu OEDSG

2. Project Objectives and Components:

a. Objectives

Maintain progress in the areas of health and nutrition, education, water and sanitation, and social protection.

(This is the overall objective, a list of more specific objectives are given in the policy matrix, however to the extent that the specific objectives refer to outcomes they cannot be assessed since no outcome data are reported).

b. Components (or Key Conditions in the case of Adjustment Loans):

The credit had seven key conditions:

  1. Maintain a stable macroeconomic framework.
  2. The Government approves a supreme decree which regulates Law 2042 and provides that 5 percent of the resources from its social security administration budget is allocated to fund disease prevention activities, particularly for the Expanded Program of Immunization.
  3. The Ministry of Education prepares the Multi-annual Operational Plan 2004-2008 for the education sector, incorporating in its objectives the Millennium Development Goals.
  4. A supreme decree that authorizes the creation of FUNDASAB has been enacted.
  5. (a) Approval of a law that permits the direct channeling of external financing resources to all water and sanitation providers, and (b) approval of a supreme decree that establishes the new financing policy and the Institutional Modernization Program for the water and sanitation sector, including mechanisms for the allocation of credits and grants to the public and mixed service providers either directly or through the municipalities.
  6. The Government creates a Social Protection Net (RPS) with, at least, the following characteristics: (i) mechanisms to coordinate existing programs, avoid overlap and guarantee a coherent operation between the RPS and the National Compensation Policy; (ii) a coordination unit formally set under the direction of the Unique Directorate of Funds (DUF); (iii) operational manuals including criteria to improve targeting according to unemployment and poverty incidence and select eligible projects which are not part of routine maintenance obligations of the municipalities, and (iv) design of a single beneficiary register system.
  7. The Government starts a process to implement a participative evaluation system which will gather the opinions, satisfaction levels and expectations of the users on the quality and adequacy of the health, education and water and sanitation programs. Therefore, the government has : (i) presented to the civil society a proposal of the mechanisms and instruments for the follow-up and participative evaluation of the MDGs; and (ii) has signed an inter-ministerial agreement (health, education and basic sanitation) to develop the above-mentioned proposal.

c. Comments on Project Cost, Financing, Borrower Contribution, and Dates

The credit was a single tranche operation, disbursed upon the borrower satisfying seven prior actions. This loan was the first of a series of three single tranche credits. The full amount of US$25 million was disbursed upon effectiveness.

The program was jointly financed by the German agency KfW which was also involved in project preparation. Other bilateral and multilateral agencies were involved in discussions regarding specific sectors. However, no financial data on the contributions from these agencies are available.

3. Relevance of Objectives & Design:

The overall objective was, and remains, relevant to the country's needs. The use of a series of single tranche adjustment operations appears appropriate given (1) the need for budget support to address the difficult fiscal situation, and (2) to maintain flexibility. The design focused on a number of core social sectors linked to the MDGs.

4. Achievement of Objectives (Efficacy) :

The overall objective was achieved.

The seven prior actions were completed prior to effectiveness (It seems that some were completed prior to appraisal, but this is not clear from either the Project Document or ICR). However, there have been problems in the water sector. Following public protests, the President proposed cancellation of contracts to a French company for provision of water to El Alto and La Paz. In consequence, the global policy for this sector is not deemed to be fully implemented. The second credit was reduced from US$25 million to US$ 15 million and the sector triggers turned into benchmarks.

The president threatened to resign in March 2005, but this was not accepted by Congress. However he did resign in early June, thus creating a very uncertain political environment for the continuation of the program.

5. Efficiency:

The program contained a reasonable number of triggers across a range of sectors, and these actions were carried out. Efficiency is thus rated as satisfactory.

6. M&E Design, Implementation, & Utilization:

The M&E design had two levels: (1) actions and processes in support of the credit, and (2) progress in reaching the MDGs (including some intermediate outcomes). The project document indicates that a technical committee has been set up to monitor the second of these. Although there is mention of the committee working to identify the causal links between policies and outcomes, there is no clear program of impact evaluation (i.e. monitoring appears stronger than evaluation).

The ICR reports data from monitoring of actions and processes. It does not present any information either on progress toward meeting the MDGs nor on the corresponding monitoring system, so no judgement can be made on implementation or utilization of this part of the M&E system.

7. Other (Safeguards, Fiduciary, Unintended Impacts--Positive & Negative):


8. Ratings:
OED Review
Reason for Disagreement/Comments
Institutional Dev.: 
LikelyLikelyThe use of decrees and legislation may succeed in locking in reform, though they may be undermined by political instability.
Bank Perf.: 
Borrower Perf.: 
SatisfactorySatisfactoryThe ICR notes that a rating of Moderately Satisfactory would be appropriate were it available. OED agrees.
Quality of ICR: 

- When insufficient information is provided by the Bank for OED to arrive at a clear rating, OED will downgrade the relevant ratings as warranted beginning July 1, 2006.
- ICR rating values flagged with ' * ' don't comply with OP/BP 13.55, but are listed for completeness.

9. Lessons:

The program has maintained a focus on the social sectors despite a fragile political situation (public protests and resignation of the President). This suggests that an adjustment credit can provide the framework for continued progress on policy change despite other difficulties.

10. Assessment Recommended?  No


11. Comments on Quality of ICR:

The ICR does not: (1) discuss the prior condition of maintaining a stable macroeconomic framework; (2) present any data on the selected MDG indicators and targets (Table 3, p. 31 of PD); and (3) does not fully address the problems posed by political instability (the President had resigned before the ICR was issued, but this is not mentioned). Inclusion of these elements is required by the guidelines for simplified ICRs.

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