International Bank for Reconstruction and Development
An international body set up in 1946 after the Bretton Woods conference to promote economic recovery and development. The IBRD was originally intended to assist in the reconstruction of countries in Europe and Asia damaged by the Second World War. It has since become a provider of both funds and technical and economic advice for least developed countries (LDCs). The IBRD is funded by quota subscriptions of member countries, partly in gold and national currencies, but mainly in uncalled capital, which is, however, available in case of need to back IBRD guarantees of private loans to LDCs. The IBRD's own loans are only available for public sector or state-guaranteed projects, but it has an affiliate, the International Finance Corporation, which can make and guarantee loans to private sector borrowers. It has another affiliate, the International Development Association, specializing in loans on less stringent terms to the LDCs.