Lucknow: World Bank Group President Jim Young Kim on Tuesday said the mission of the multilateral institution was to end poverty, and there is no way in achieving this objective for the country without ending it in Uttar Pradesh.
"We have called on two fundamental ideas one is end to poverty... In this generation, we think that we can end the poverty," Kim said in a joint press conference with Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav.
He said there is no way the plan could be successful in achieving the aim of ending poverty without being successful in UP, where 8 per cent of the people live below the poverty line.
"This is not right that people live below our level," Kim said.
The other issue on which the bank is focussed is to further `sheer prosperity`.
"In other words, we are very focussed on economic growth which brings jobs. We know that in the developing countries 90 per cent jobs are created in the private sector, so we need the growth in this sector," he said.
"When we talk about sheer prosperity we need that the growth in the economy has to be shared with the young people, with women and even with future generation," Kim said.
The WB president, who had a meeting with Akhilesh Yadav in the morning, said that they had a very good discussion on a number of projects.
"We are very committed to UP. We are starting with specific projects. We will look forward to expanding in other areas," Kim said.
He said the group has safeguards for protecting the environment so that people are not displaced.
"We have very high standards in terms with the government we work with. We are very optimistic that we can accomplish great things in UP," he said.
In reply to a question Kim said that every World Bank project is audited.
"We feel that we have the absolutely the best system to detect corruption," he said.
In reply to another query, Kim said that throughout the Indian government there was extreme focus on putting in place the elements that keep growth in picture.
"We understand that there is lot of investment that still needs to be done. There is something like one trillion dollar infrastructure deficit in India in the next five years," Kim said.
He said that the Indian government plans to move forward aggressively.
"We were told that 53 per cent of the money is going to come from the public fund and 27 per cent from private fund. This is the new courageous and correct approach. We believe that the Indian government is focused on the right thing," Kim said.
On a question regarding UP government distributing free laptops, he said that effort to get technology in the hands of the young people was very important.
Yadav said that during the meeting discussions were held on various projects and he was hopeful that positive cooperation would be received from the World Bank.
He said the state had a long association with the WB and support had been received in several sectors in the last 40 years.
"At present, with the support of the Bank two projects are in operations, whose size is 354 million dollars. To achieve high economic growth rate there are several challenges," Kim said.
He said the size of the projects discussed with the WB team was around Rs 20,000 crore.