IFC, UK team up to promote health PPPs in ‘low-income states’

The World Bank Group member and the UK’s Department for International Development have signed a memorandum of understanding to develop public-private partnerships in poor countries across Africa and South Asia.

The International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, and the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID) have partnered to help governments in “low-income and fragile states” use public-private partnerships (PPPs) to develop their healthcare sectors.

The pilot initiative will focus on educating governments in poor countries across South Asia and Africa on “how they might fill the large gaps left by traditional public service provision” using PPPs, Laurence Carter, director of IFC Advisory Services in Public-Private Partnerships, explained in a statement.

“We’ve been working closely with IFC for over a year on developing this innovative programme to target the health needs of the world’s poorest people through PPP financing and delivery models,” said Gavin McGillivray, the head of DFID’s Private Sector Department. “Just as importantly, the programme will help governments be better prepared to get the best value and results from contracting private health providers,” he added.

The IFC/DFID initiative will be the first project sponsored by a multi-donor partnership known as HANSHEP (Harnessing Non-State Actors for Better Health for the Poor), which was founded last year by, among others, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, KfW and the United States Agency for International Development.