Last month our colleagues from the World Bank Group (WBG) published a technical note on Strengthening Service Delivery of Investment Promotion Agencies.

The research shows that IPAs may be the best public institutions to meet government objectives for attracting, establishing, retaining, expanding and linking productive private investment. As part of this, IPAs need to provide relevant, high-quality services to investors at different stages of the investment life cycle. Informed by its research and experience in global operations, the WBG introduced the Comprehensive Investor Services Framework (CISF), a catalog of specific services to meet investor needs.

While the note was written before COVID-19, WAIPA and the World Bank Group (WBG) consider that now more than ever investors need support to face huge challenges related to COVID-19 impacts.

WBG’s initial global scan shows that some IPAs are providing some level of support now by:

  1. Strengthening communication to update investors daily on COVID-19 and government responses – via website, newsletters and social media
  2. Bolstering aftercare services to high-risk investors
  3. Establishing and actively participating in emergency task forces with key actors
  4. Boosting advocacy services to solve pressing issues investors face on systematic fashion; and even
  5. Supporting companies to rapidly shift production lines towards in-demand products and services during the crisis.

They are doing these while operating remotely and safely through social media and cloud-based services.