Doing Business with the World Bank and the IDB

The Embassy of Sweden in Washington, DC supports Swedish companies in their efforts to be awarded contracts financed by the World Bank and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB).

The Banks annually finance projects in developing countries totalling almost USD 40 billion. The Embassy of Sweden offers fast and professional service to Swedish companies regarding business opportunities with the two Washington, DC based Banks.

These international organizations, headquartered in Washington, DC, finance projects in developing countries in, for example, infrastructure, environment (i.e., water and waste water, solid waste and air pollution), energy, telecom, health, education, forestry, agriculture and land administration projects. While IDB only finances projects in Latin America and the Caribbean, the World Bank operates all over the world.

Many of the projects include procurement of consulting services for technical assistance, while others include indentifying suppliers of goods. Others still are for construction firms, sometimes set up as BOT or BOOT projects requiring a company willing to act as an operator and/or an investor respectively. There is also a tendency within the Development Banks to emphasize private sector development. This means that the private sector branch of the World Bank (called the International Finance Corporation or IFC) and its corresponding branch at IDB (called International Investment Corporation or IIC)will become increasingly important.

Swedish industry generally has a good reputation within the Development Banks, but the Swedish share of the business from Bank financed projects is very low in relation to Sweden's role as a major donor. Swedish companies therefore need to improve their marketing efforts and local presence towards the Banks as well as toward authorities in the borrowing countries . A company which wants to successfully bid on combined World Bank and IDB annually financed projects totalling almost USD 40 billion must also have an excellent knowledge on the Banks Procurement Rules & Regulations.


Therefore, we have developed, and are currently implementing, a strategy to increase interest and participation of Swedish companies in World Bank/IDB financed projects and to reach a sustainable higher business volume for Swedish companies. Since mid 1998, we have been coordinating various World Bank and IDB efforts in Sweden, the borrowing countries and in Washington. Our goals are to:

  • Create an industry group in Sweden that is actively involved with the World Bank and the IDB.
  • Maintain good knowledge of Development Bank procurement rules and winning bid strategies.
  • Initiate and encourage early involvement by Swedish consultants and suppliers in the World Bank/IDB procurement process.
  • Provide Swedish companies with the latest news on Bank responses/ strategies in targeted regions as well as resulting business opportunities.
  • Be a fast and professional provider of both general and specific information to Swedish companies on Development Bank financed projects.
  • Facilitate contacts with the Banks and increase understanding as to how they work .


We can help Swedish companies become more successful in being awarded contracts by:

  • Scanning targeted regions and sectors for relevant projects on a pre-pipeline stage.
  • Providing information on the development strategies for each borrowing country.
  • Using our outstanding networks among the task and sector leaders in Washington to obtain fast, accurate and direct information about specific projects.
  • Arranging seminars, both in Washington and in Sweden, on procurement guidelines and how to sucessfully compete for Development Bank financed projects. Such seminars are offered both for consulting and supplying companies.
  • Arranging seminars, both in Washington and in Sweden, between companies in a particular industry or sector and Bank task leaders on relevant projects.
  • Setting up business meetings between individual companies and Bank task leaders.
  • Providing information and help regarding the Swedish Funds managed by the Banks.


Apart from providing general export information, which we offer for free, we offer tailor made export consulting services and business support based on pre-agreed fees.