America’s Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) and the government of Burkina Faso have signed a US$480.9 million Millennium Challenge Compact, according to a US state department release made available to PANA here.
The signing on Monday in Washington DC was attended by several Burkinabe government officials, led by President Blaise Campaore.
US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, who chairs the MCC Board, said the MCC represented a ”transformational shift in how we provide our foreign assistance”
”It is an approach that supports countries that rule justly, invest in their people’s health and education, and promote economic freedom. MCC investments are reducing poverty through economic growth in Africa, in Central America, in Eurasia, and in the Pacific by helping those countries most committed to their own development – to make hard reforms, to help their people out of poverty, and to break through barriers to economic growth.
”MCC grants support those country-led efforts that lead to real and sustainable results. And with today’s signing, we have now awarded nearly $6 billion to 17 MCC partner countries across the world,” she said.
Commenting specifically on the agreement with Burkina Faso,Ms. Rice said the compact ”is results-oriented”.
”It is a strategic plan to improve agricultural productivity, land use rights and land management, farm-to-market roads, and girls’ primary education. This compact builds on Burkina Faso’s already successful threshold program, administered in partnership with USAID.
”This compact reflects the priorities set by the people of Burkina Faso – born out of exhaustive consultations throughout their society, and demonstrating the responsibility that the leaders and the people of Burkina Faso are willing to shoulder for their own development. And this compact will help Burkina Faso to foster strong and sustainable agricultural productivity, an antidote to the rising global commodity prices crisis that is affecting the poorest nations,” Rice added.
She said the US wanted Burkina Faso’s compact to succeed in every way – for the benefit of the people of Burkina Faso and as a model of stability and growth in West Africa, and as an example to the world that poverty can be overcome and replaced with prosperity.