This is the fourth Annual Report of the Competitive Industries and Innovation Program (CIIP), a multidonor partnership among the World Bank Group (WBG); the European Union (EU); the African, Caribbean, and Pacific Group of States (ACP) Secretariat; and the governments of Austria, Norway, and Switzerland. This report outlines the progress that CIIP has made in implementing the program’s objectives during its fiscal year from June 30, 2016, to June 30, 2017 (FY17).

CIIP continues to support client countries in transforming their economies. This aid has become increasingly urgent in recent years because developing economies have experienced a steep decline in commodity prices, which leads to slower than expected growth. CIIP provides sup­port to country-level interventions and makes global policy experience in industry competitive­ness and innovation more accessible to policy makers. Using a catalytic approach, CIIP seeks to leverage financing, government, private sector, and WBG investments that address the core constraints that are preventing private sector engagement.

During this reporting period, CIIP has contributed to a wide range of interventions, including the development of special economic zone (SEZ) policy and the design and implementation of SEZs in Ethiopia and Jamaica. It has also helped to design activities that enhance the competi­tiveness at the subnational levels in the Arab Republic of Egypt and Nigeria, to create an inves­tor survey that was implemented to support Jordan’s policy initiative of creating jobs for Syrian refugees, and to provide and complete location analyses for SEZs in Timor-Leste.

The global policy experience for this year focused on innovation and SEZs. CIIP undertook a diagnostic of innovation activities in developing countries and documented a range of policy solutions that could build innovation capabilities in developing countries. CIIP also assembled a database of 585 SEZs in 53 countries. CIIP used the database to conduct an operational review of SEZ policies across several countries.

CIIP’s global reach now totals 23 countries. The 16 country projects active in FY17 are profiled in this report. FY17 CIIP operations leveraged $1.354 billion in public investment. The CIIP grants in Ethiopia and Mauritania contributed to the creation of 6,717 jobs, of which 5,448 were for women in Ethiopia. CIIP operations in Jamaica, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Mauritania, Nigeria, and Tunisia contributed to $565.5 million in private sector investments. With CIIP’s support, $18 million of additional sales were facilitated in firms linked to the supported industrial zones in Ethiopia. In Mauritania and Ethiopia, 166 new firms were created with CIIP support. CIIP also helped identify and promote 170 investment opportunities in Jordan.

CIIP has been extended until March 31, 2019, and an independent review was completed in October 2017. The review found that the target of 9 out of 13 standard output indicators have already been met and/or exceeded. In summary, CIIP was rated highly satisfactory overall. The most recent call for project proposals was made on March 23, 2017, and CIIP received 26 applications, which are currently under review.

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