Coming out of the COVID-19 Pandemic

Doing business with the International Financial Institutions (IFI’s) / Multilateral Development Banks (MDB’s)

After a bit of a break we are excited to share this latest Newsletter with you and reintroduce image8326522ourselves!

We hope all of you got through the COVID-19 pandemic safely and well. Although, life is getting back to (the new) normal, travel is still somewhat difficult and many offices are not fully open yet.

The World Bank Group Headquarters is currently at 50% capacity and slowly opening up to visitors again, the recent Spring Meetings were still held in a hybrid format. Nonetheless, business must go on albeit via email/Zoom/Teams etc.

The IFI-Team at the Netherlands Embassy in Washington D.C. continues to support Dutch organizations (companies, knowledge institutes etc.) with their international ambitions via the IFI’s. Although there was an overall decline in projects during COVID, we are almost back at pre-pandemic levels. But even during the pandemic we saw some great successes by Dutch organizations, especially in the Health sector.

Looking ahead we will particularly focus on the fields of Infrastructure/Water Management, AgriFood, Health and Energy, as this is where we see most potential for the Netherlands. Within these sectors, certain themes will beworld bank of particular interest, including Nature based Solutions (NbS), Protein Transition, Saline Agriculture and Hydrogen. We will also pay mind to several cross-cutting themes, such as Smart Cities, Digitalization and Diversity & Inclusion. Of course, all underscored by the Netherlands’ commitment to achieving our Climate Goals.

Obviously projects take place all across the world, but we will pro-actively focus on countries in which we expect substantial business- and partnership opportunities for the Netherlands. We do this with the help of our local Embassies and Consulates. So, if you/your company is already active in a country or have a particular interest there, it can make sense to get connected both locally with the WBG office and NL embassy as well as with RVO and the IFI-team in Washington D.C.

It is good to note that the month of June will be bringing several “international business events” in the Netherlands hosted by RVO, so keep an eye out for further announcements.

Besides the World Bank it is worth mentioning that other IFI’s (for example the Inter-American Development Bank and USAID) also offer potentially interesting business/partnership opportunities. Please visit the websites to learn more.

Navigating the IFI’s, identifying suitable opportunities and entering the bidding process can be a bit overwhelming. Therefore, we encourage you to check out the Fact Sheets on our Blog for further guidance and practical tips. And of course, we are happy to assist at any time!


Since our last Newsletter there have been some personnel changes that we would like to note:

  • At the Netherlands Embassy in Washington D.C., Esther Smith has joined the Economic team. Together with Vincent Kooijman she aims to help Dutch companies and other organizations do business with the IFI’s/Multilateral Development Banks. Prior to this role she assisted the Dutch private sector with their business/entry into the United States, after initially coming to the U.S. to work for the Netherlands Foreign Investment Agency.
  • At RVO in the Netherlands, Stephanie Broeder has joined the “TIO-team” (Team Internationale Organisaties). At RVO Stephanie is one of the main contact points for Dutch companies looking to do business with the World Bank Group and Inter-American Development Bank, bringing a breadth of experience from her time at the Netherlands Embassy in Washington D.C.

Within the Netherlands’ Constituency Office at the World Bank Group two new Advisors have joined:

  • Sharmila Bihari – Senior Advisor to the Executive Director
  • Jochem Wissenburg – Advisor to the Executive Director

At the Inter-American Development Bank:

  • Bjorn Kuil – Netherlands Representative

We look forward to connecting and assisting you with you international ambitions!