Arne Hoel, World Bank

COVID-19 (Coronavirus)

Changes to CAO’s Work due to COVID-19 (Coronavirus)

The rapidly evolving global situation with COVID-19 (Coronavirus) is impacting all of us in unexpected ways. CAO sends its sympathies and support to all our teams, friends, colleagues, and partners around the world who are being adversely affected by this outbreak. World Bank Group offices in Washington DC, and the majority of country offices, are now conducting home-based work and all mission travel is suspended worldwide. These restrictions apply to all CAO staff and consultants. In light of these measures, CAO is making adjustments to its work, which are outlined below.

Case Handling:
Due to the unprecedented situation with COVID-19 and related travel restrictions, CAO is adjusting case handling as needed and in discussion with the parties. CAO will adopt a flexible approach and will continue to manage cases remotely, wherever feasible, and guided by the availability and unique circumstances of the parties. There may be cases in assessment, dispute resolution and compliance processes that are subject to extended timeframes, delays or postponement in activities. CAO will communicate proactively with the parties about any such anticipated changes in case processing.

If you have questions or concerns related to the status of a new complaint, or cases in ongoing assessment, dispute resolution or compliance processes, please contact the relevant specialist or email us at and we will direct your enquiry to the relevant staff member.

CAO will keep its website updated with case developments and other news, and will continue to issue a monthly CAO update by email and a quarterly newsletter. If you would like to receive these updates by email, please click this link to sign up.

External Review:
The External Review of IFC/MIGA’s Accountability including CAO’s Role and Effectiveness is ongoing. The External Review Team are expected to conclude their work in May 2020 as originally planned. Timelines are not currently delayed due to Coronavirus.

CAO at 20:
CAO’s 20th Anniversary Symposium co-hosted with American University Washington College of Law, which was planned for April, has been postponed. CAO is developing alternative plans for CAO at 20 themed events and will provide updates in due course.

Advisory Work:
If you have questions about CAO’s advisory work pipeline, please contact the advisory team.

All CAO outreach events have been postponed until further notice. Any questions regarding CAO outreach can be directed here.


One-Pager on Changes to CAO's Casework due to COVID-19 and Health Information
CAO has prepared a one-pager on changes to CAO's casework due to coronavirus, which is available at the link below for download and printing. The one-pager also includes an infographic from the Pan-American Health Organization with guidance on how to 'be aware, prepare, and act' with regard to the coronavirus. Additional translations are forthcoming and will be posted in due course.


English - Full Version ; CAO Page ; PAHO Page

Spanish - Full Version; CAO Page ; PAHO Page

French - Full Version; CAO page; PAHO Page

Portuguese - Full Version; CAO Page ; PAHO Page

Arabic - Full Version; CAO Page; PAHO Page