The International Development Association (IDA) is the part of the World Bank that helps the world’s poorest countries. Overseen by 173 shareholder nations, IDA aims to reduce poverty by providing zero to low-interest loans (called “credits”) and grants for programs that boost economic growth, reduce inequalities, and improve people’s living conditions.
IDA complements the World Bank’s original lending arm—the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD). IBRD was established to function as a self-sustaining business and provides loans and advice to middle-income and credit-worthy poor countries. IBRD and IDA share the same staff and headquarters and evaluate projects with the same rigorous standards.
IDA is one of the largest sources of assistance for the world’s 74 poorest countries and is the single largest source of donor funds for basic social services in these countries. IDA lends money on concessional terms. Recipients with a high risk of debt distress receive 100 percent of their financial assistance in the form of grants and those with a medium risk of debt distress receive 50 percent in the form of grants. Other recipients receive IDA credits on regular or blend terms with 38-year and 30-year maturities respectively. Small States receive IDA financing on small economy terms with 40-year maturity.