POVERTY GRANT: The World Bank has released a $300 million development loan to the Philippines to support the government's poverty reduction efforts.

BACKGROUND: Although the $250 billion Philippine economy surged 7.8 percent in the first quarter, nearly 28 percent of the 97 million people in the country are extremely poor. The government aims to cut that to 16.6 percent by 2015.

THE GOAL: Axel van Trotsenburg, the bank's vice president for East Asia and the Pacific, said the bank will support government programs that create jobs in rural areas where most of the poor are and expand the Conditional Cash Transfer program that gives cash to poor families if their children stay in school and have medical care.