Namibia 18th African country to receive MCC funds

Namibia becomes the 18th country to receive funds from the MCC. Of those 18 countries, 11 are in Africa.

The MCC is a US government agency designed to work with some of the poorest countries in the world.

Before a country can become eligible to receive assistance, it examines its performance on 17 independent and transparent policy indicators such as investing in education, control of corruption and natural resource management.

Since its creation in 2004, MCC has approved nearly US$6,4 billion in compact and threshold assistance.

Additional countries eligible to submit proposals for MCA compact assistance for 2008 include Burkina Faso, Bolivia, East Timor, Jordan, Malawi, Moldova, Philippines, Senegal, Ukraine, and Namibia.

The grant signed with Namibia seeks to help Namibia improve the quality of education and training for underserved populations and to diversify Namibia’s export base by capitalising on its comparative advantages such as large areas of semi-arid communal land suitable for livestock, and diverse wildlife and unique landscapes for ecotourism, to increase the incomes of poor Namibians in rural areas of the country.

The agreement includes a clause that all funds not spend by the end of the five-year period of implementation will remain with the MCC.

The partnership is part of the Millennium Challenge Account compact initiative and the three focal areas of the compact build on policy reforms already underway in the education, tourism, and agricultural sectors.

Over one billion Namibian dollars have been allocated to improve the education sector’s effectiveness, efficiency and quality through infrastructure improvements, institutional strengthening, and policy reform.

Over a million students across Namibia will benefit from improved provision of textbooks and an improved quality of education. An estimated 11 000 additional students will receive financing for tertiary education.

August 2008
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