FROM A SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT
AMASSIVE increase in financial Lid to the poor countries during the Ili five years, announced by World Bank president Robert S. McNam a in Washington on Monday, has been welcomed by a number of Brit:-1-...rd „ ties concerned with helping the world's under-developed area.
Mr. McNamara, addressing the 111 finance ministers of the hank's member countries, said loans to African countries would be trebled and to Latin American nations doubled. Those to Asian countries would rise substantially.
Overall, the World Bank would lend twice the amount it had allocated during the past five years, with the help going to those poor nations which needed it most.
Mr. Erik Pearse, world poverty secretary of the Catholic Ins itute for International Relati s, said in London he 'warmly welcomed Mr. McNamara's dynamic statement.
"We are particularly pleased to note the increased support which will be granted to agriculture—an area dreadfully neglected by the World Bank in the past.
'Anther hopeful sign is what seems to be his promise to depart from what hitherto has been termed 'stringent' banking considerations. Thew have severely limited the scope of the World Bank's actions in the past.
"There is hope, too, that Mr. McNamara will be able to communicate his sense of urgency to certain governments so that they will re plenish the International Development Association funds—already long delayed.
The Rev. Nicholas Stacey, Deputy Director of Oxfam, described Mr. McNamara's promises as "a very significant and important answer to some of the feelings of cynicism, boredom and apathy in some places towards world aid development.
''Mr. McNamara's remarks were extraordinarily timely. As president of General Motors and later as U.S. Defence Secretary he made his reputation for his stress on cost-effectiveness. Therefore he's nobody's fool and when he promises aid to the developing nations you can be sure he believes that it will be economically viable and efficient.
"He answers people like Mr. John Davies, Director-General of the Confederation of British Industry, who said in London recently that overseas aid during the last decade had proved a terrible failure." .
The World Bank plans were made known less than a week after the Pontifical Commission for Justice and Peace, meeting at the Vatican, expressed dismay that America and European nations were cutting their aid to developing "countries.
"The United States, economically the strongest of the rich nations, has cut its aid to
£600 million, its lowest ft 20 years. Aid from the n or European countries is e ter falling or stagnating, "Yet the rich countries increasing their wealth armaments are costiag abo' times the total anouni aid."
The World Bank was ied
in 1945 to facilitate cat in
vestment in developing
to provide loans where mte capital is not available, aid to encourage international nvest_ ment in its member counties. Affiliated to it are the International Development Asocia tion and the Internaional Finance Corporation. which work in concert to ales, cud, Mr. Roy Jenkins, theChancellor of the Exchequir. and Sir Leslie O'Brien, G.vernor of the Bank of Englard, flew to Washington for the conference of the I.D.A. ani
Mr. McNamara said he had always regarded the World Bank as a developmen agency, but when he took office he was aware that the peopbs of the world looked on the 1960s— the United Nations' Development Decade — win a deep sense of frustration mid failure.
The rich countries felt they are nd 20 of