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Should Pakistan Tell US Where to Shove its Aid?

"Aid only postpones the basic solutions to crucial development problems by tentatively ameliorating their manifestations without tackling their root causes. The structural, political, economic, etc. damage that it inflicts upon recipient countries is also enormous.” These words were written in a letter to UN to refuse aid by Finance Minister Berhane Abrehe of Eritrea which is the 7th poorest nation in the world.

Can Pakistan (per capita annual income of $3000) do what Eritrea (per capita annual income of less than $700) has already done with UN aid? Say "No" to foreign aid?



Pakistan Movement for Justice party leader and cricket hero Imran Khan thinks so. Echoing the sentiments of the Eritrean minister, Imran Khan told the BBC recently that "if we don't have aid we will be forced to make reforms and stand on our own feet."




Let's examine in a little more detail the proposition that Pakistan should tell the United States to take its aid and shove it:

1. Only $179.5 million out of $1.51 billion in U.S. civilian aid to Pakistan was actually disbursed in fiscal 2010, according to a report by the United States Government Accountability Office.

2. Even if the entire $1.51 billion had been disbursed, it would account for only $8.39 per person, about 0.28%, a very tiny fraction of Pakistanis' per capita income of $3000 a year.

3. Pakistan ended last fiscal year in June 2011 with a small current account surplus of about half a billion US dollars. It received inflows over $40 billion in the form of export earnings ($25 billion), remittances from Pakistani diaspora ($10 billion), and FDI, FII and other accounts. The actual US aid of just $179.5 million out of over $40 billion in 2010-2011 is a negligible figure.

4. Of the $179.5 million received by Pakistan in 2010, $75 million of the US aid funds were transferred to bolster the Benazir Income Support Program, a social development program run by the Pakistani government. Another $45 million was given to the Higher Education Commission to support "centers of excellence" at Pakistani universities; $19.5 million went to support Pakistan's Fulbright Scholarship program; $23.3 million went to flood relief; $1.2 billion remained unspent.



Although refusing US aid will hurt the anti-poverty efforts, higher education and infrastructure development programs to some extent unless made up by raising greater tax revenues to replace it, it is theoretically possible to say No to the US aid without a big negative short-term impact on Pakistan's economy.

However, Pakistan would be well advised to not seek confrontation with Washington even after refusing US aid. Why? The reason is simply that the United States is the architect and the unquestioned leader of the international order that emerged after the WW II and this system still remains largely intact. Not only is the US currency the main reserve and trade currency of the world, the US also dominates world institutions like the UN and its agencies, the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Trade Organization (WTO).

All foreign aid, regardless of its source, comes with strings attached. And those in Pakistan who think that China, undoubtedly a rapidly rising power, can replace US as a powerful friend in helping Pakistan now are deluding themselves. Today, China's power and influence in the world are not at all comparable to the dominant role of the United States. Chinese currency is neither a trade nor a reserve currency. Chinese themselves depended on the US agreement to be allowed to join the WTO after accepting terms essentially dictated by the United States in a bilateral agreement. Most of China's trade is still with the United States and its European allies. And the Chinese military power does not extend much beyond its region because it, unlike the United States, lacks the means to project it in other parts of the world.

Rather than alienate the United States and risk being subjected to international isolation and crippling sanctions like North Korea (a Chinese ally), Pakistanis must swallow their pride now and choose better ways of becoming more self-reliant in the long run.

Here are some of my recommendations for Pakistanis to move toward greater self-reliance:

1. They must all pay their fair share of taxes to reduce dependence on foreign aid and loans.

2. They must save more, a lot more than the current 10% of GDP, to have more money for investment in the future.

3. They must spend more on education and heath care and human development to develop the workforce for the 21st century.

4. They must invest in the necessary infrastructure in terms of energy, water, sanitation, communications, roads, ports, rail networks, etc, to enable serious industrial and trade development.

5. They must develop industries and offer higher value products and services for exports to earn the US dollars and Euros to buy what they need from the world without getting into debt as the Chinese have done.

No amount of empty rhetoric of the "ghairat brigade" can get Pakistanis to reclaim their pride unless they do the hard work as suggested above.

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Comment by Riaz Haq on January 26, 2014 at 9:56pm

Bill Gates' Annual Letter 2014:

In their annual letter published on Tuesday, Bill and Melinda Gates addressed a number of claims about global poverty often used to argue against giving aid to countries that need it most -- and debunked each and every one.

Read the letter in its entirety here.

Myth No. 1: Poor countries are doomed to remain poor.

Fact: Citizens of countries once said to be "trapped in poverty" are now earning competitive salaries. Since 1960, China’s income per person has increased eightfold and India’s has quadrupled. Even smaller countries are seeing vast improvements. Botswana, for example, has witnessed a 30-fold increase in per capita income, Bill Gates noted.

Myth No. 2: There is no hope for Africa.

Fact: Africa has its share of problems, but the continent has also come a long way on a number of fronts. Since 1960, the life expectancy of women in sub-Saharan Africa has increased from 41 to 57, the chairman of Microsoft said. Whereas an estimated 40 percent of African children were in school in 1970, now more than 75 percent are pursuing education. Also, the number of AIDS-related deaths dropped 38 percent in Eastern and Southern Africa between 2005 and 2011, according to the United Nations.

Myth No. 3: Helping almost every country achieve middle-income status will just make some problems worse.

Fact: It’s true that too much development can put a further strain on the environment, but that’s not reason enough to stop helping struggling countries, Bill Gates wrote. The key is simply to develop cheaper and cleaner sources of energy and to recognize that as more people become educated, they’ll be able to tackle these problems on their own.

Myth No. 4: Foreign aid is a big fat waste.

Fact: We’re not committing as much money to foreign aid as naysayers may have you think. Bill Gates noted that Norway, the most generous nation in the world, allots less than 3 percent of its budget to foreign aid. The U.S. allots less than 1 percent, which comes to about $30 billion a year.

While that certainly isn’t pocket change, the context is key, especially when considering where this money is going. It’s being spent on vaccines, education, family planning and other life-saving tools that keep children alive and empower them to become functioning members of society who can make a difference.

Myth No. 5: Aid holds back normal economic development.

Fact: Simply put, aid gives struggling countries the cushion they need to stand on their own two feet. According to Bill Gates, a number of countries that once heavily relied on aid to survive hardly get any today. Those include Botswana, Morocco, Brazil, Mexico, Chile, Costa Rica, Peru and Thailand, among others.

Myth No. 6: Saving lives leads to overpopulation.

Fact: According to Melinda Gates, parents are actually more inclined to have a lot of kids when they don’t feel certain that their children will survive. In Afghanistan, for example, the child mortality rate is very high, yet Afghan women have an average of 6.2 children each, she noted. So even though more than 10 percent of Afghan children don’t survive, the country’s population is expected to grow to 55 million from 30 million by 2050.

Myth No. 7: The world is getting worse.

Fact: Yes, there are still plenty of problems that have to be addressed, but we’ve made an incredible amount of progress and have much more to look forward to. India is on track to be officially rid of polio this year, and the world could be polio-free by 2018. Since 1990, childhood death rates have been cut in half and maternal deaths have dropped by nearly the same share, according to the World Health Organization. Anti-female genital mutilation campaigns are making progress in a number of countries, and more women in the developing world are getting access to family planning resources.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/01/21/bill-gates-annual-letter_n...

http://annualletter.gatesfoundation.org/

Comment by Riaz Haq on January 30, 2014 at 8:32am

Following is the text of 2014 US-Pak Strategic Dialogue Ministerial Joint Statement:

Secretary of State John Kerry and Pakistan Advisor to the Prime Minister on National Security and Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz, accompanied by a high-level delegation, met in Washington on January 27, 2014, for the ministerial meeting of the US-Pakistan Strategic Dialogue.
Reaffirming the strong relationship and enduring partnership between the two countries, the Strategic Dialogue Ministerial marked the commitment of both countries to strengthen the bilateral relationship and advance their shared interests in a stable, secure, and prosperous Pakistan and region. Both sides expressed their conviction that an enduring US-Pakistan partnership is vital to regional and international security. They recognised their shared interest in Pakistan’s economic growth, increased trade, regional stability, and mutually determined measures to counter extremism and terrorism.
Kerry and Aziz reaffirmed the importance of the US-Pakistan Strategic Dialogue and reviewed the progress of the Dialogue’s five working groups: 1) Energy; 2) Security, Strategic Stability, and Nonproliferation; 3) the Defence Consultative Group; 4) Law Enforcement and Counterterrorism; and 5) Economics and Finance. Meetings of the first three working groups convened in late 2013.
BUILDING A FOUNDATION FOR
INCLUSIVE ECONOMIC GROWTH
Kerry and Aziz reaffirmed their commitment to expanding bilateral trade and business links and welcomed the upcoming US-Pakistan Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA) Council meeting in March 2014 in Washington. The Secretary underscored the US commitment to supporting private sector-led growth in Pakistan and welcomed the proposal by Advisor Aziz to regularly convene a Joint Business and Investment Forum, involving the private sector. Both sides also look forward to convening a follow-on conference to the successful US-Pakistan Business Opportunities Conferences held in Dubai in June 2013, and to a US-convened conference in April 2014 in Islamabad that will link Pakistani and Central Asian businesses to encourage increased regional trade. They also look forward to the forthcoming announcement of a third fund of the Pakistan Private Investment Initiative (PPII) to leverage private equity for small and medium enterprises. Additionally, they reaffirmed the agenda for the upcoming Economics and Finance Working Group, to be held in April 2014 in Washington, where the United States and Pakistan will discuss trade and investment promotion, economic assistance, and regional economic integration. They further proposed that the working groups continue to refine the benchmarks used to realise these goals.
ALLEVIATING PAKISTAN’S
ENERGY CRISIS
Strategic Dialogue participants, including Minister of Water and Power Khawaja Asif, reviewed concrete next steps from the Energy Working Group, which was held in Washington in November 2013, as well as a subsequent trade delegation to Houston, Texas. The two sides expressed satisfaction with discussions held in November 2013 on a range of options to enable Pakistan to overcome its energy deficiencies. The two sides noted progress in developing a US technical assistance programme to support the development of Pakistan’s domestic natural gas reserves. Secretary Kerry highlighted that US assistance in the energy sector has added over 1,000 megawatts of power to Pakistan’s national grid, helping provide power to over 16 million Pakistanis. In addition, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), the development finance institution of the US government, is currently working on financing up to 300 MW of wind power generation projects that will deploy US-based investment in Pakistan.
The United States and Pakistan also underscored the importance of intensifying efforts to facilitate regional energy connectivity and continuing to upgrade Pakistan’s transmission infrastructure. Pakistan welcomed the recent US commitment of $15 million in support of the Central Asia-South Asia electricity transmission project (CASA-1000) that will help create a regional energy grid to link Central and South Asia for the first time. Both sides expressed support for cooperation in expanding power generation capacity; promoting the efficient use of energy resources; fostering development of Pakistan’s gas resources and their efficient utilisation; increasing utilisation of hydroelectric and renewable resources; and continuing reforms to the energy sector to ensure its financial sustainability and to attract private sector investment.
STRENGTHENING EDU LINKAGES AND PEOPLE TO PEOPLE CONTACTS
Secretary Kerry and Advisor Aziz discussed the important role of investments in education in helping prepare Pakistan’s younger generation to enter the job market and become leaders in their country and communities. They reaffirmed the shared intent expressed by President Obama and Prime Minister Sharif in October 2013 to further promote educational and research opportunities for Pakistani students, scholars, and researchers in US institutions.
SECURITY CHALLENGES
Secretary Kerry, Advisor Aziz, and their respective delegations had constructive conversations on security, strategic stability, and Pakistan’s intensified efforts to combat terrorism. Secretary Kerry thanked Advisor Aziz for Pakistan’s efforts to help defeat Al-Qaeda and expressed appreciation for the sacrifices of Pakistan’s military personnel and civilians in the fight against terrorism and extremism. The Defence Consultative Group (DCG) annual engagement is the key bilateral forum for discussing the US-Pakistan security relationship and defence cooperation. The DCG last met in November 2013, and both sides renewed their commitment to pursuing a forward-looking, transparent, and politically sustainable defence relationship in areas of mutual interest. The United States expressed appreciation for Pakistan’s continued contribution to regional maritime security, and both sides reaffirmed the decision by President Obama and Prime Minister Sharif to strengthen their cooperation in this area.
A follow-on Defence Resourcing Conference (DRC) in February 2014 will focus on security assistance issues. The United States and Pakistan will participate in the 2014 Nuclear Security Summit in The Hague, and both countries look forward to continuing the bilateral dialogue on security, strategic stability, and non-proliferation (SSSNP). Secretary Kerry expressed confidence in Pakistan’s commitment and dedication to nuclear security and appreciation for Pakistan’s efforts to improve its strategic trade controls. He also recognised that Pakistan is fully engaged with the international community on nuclear safety and security issues.
Both sides welcomed plans to convene the Law Enforcement and Counterterrorism Working Group in March in Washington, DC. During that meeting, the two countries look forward to discussing counterterrorism cooperation and assistance, as well as additional joint steps to counter improvised explosive devices (IEDs), disrupt terrorist financing, and improve border management. Both Secretary Kerry and Advisor Aziz condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestations, and Secretary Kerry expressed appreciation for the steps taken by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and the Government of Pakistan to combat terrorism. The United States and Pakistan renewed their common resolve to promote peace, stability, and transparency throughout the region and to eliminate the threats posed by extremism and terrorism.
ADVANCING REGIONAL PEACE
Recognising the paramount importance of regional stability, Secretary Kerry and Advisor Aziz stressed that a peaceful, stable, independent, and united Afghanistan is in the interest of the region, and affirmed the important role of countries in the region in supporting Afghanistan’s progress toward stability and prosperity. Both sides emphasised their support for a policy of non-interference in Afghanistan, including by all countries of the region.
Both sides also reaffirmed that Afghan-led peace and reconciliation is the surest way to end violence and ensure lasting stability of Afghanistan and the region. They noted Pakistan’s important role in supporting Afghan-led reconciliation, and Secretary Kerry expressed appreciation for Pakistan’s concrete efforts in this regard. Both sides reiterated their call on the Taliban to join the political process and enter into dialogue with the Afghan government. Secretary Kerry and Advisor Aziz reiterated that peace and reconciliation must respect the historic achievements that Afghanistan has made over the past decade.
Kerry and Aziz also recognised the potential for enhanced stability and prosperity from improved bilateral relations between Pakistan and India, benefiting the lives of citizens on both sides of the border. Toward that end, the United States welcomed Prime Minister Sharif’s vision for a peaceful neighbourhood and efforts for the economic uplift of the people of the region, including steps taken by Pakistan and India to improve their relations.
AN ENDURING PARTNERSHIP
Noting with satisfaction the overall progress of the Strategic Dialogue and of its various working groups, Secretary Kerry and Advisor Aziz affirmed the utility of continuing to refine the goals and benchmarks by which we measure success, to further promote bilateral cooperation. In this context, both sides looked forward to the next Ministerial meeting of the Strategic Dialogue to review progress in implementing our shared goals.
Kerry and Aziz reaffirmed their commitment to further advancing the strong partnership between the two countries through the Strategic Dialogue and stressed the importance of a US-Pakistan partnership built on a foundation of mutual interest and respect.

http://www.nation.com.pk/national/29-Jan-2014/joint-statement-of-us...

Comment by Riaz Haq on July 14, 2015 at 1:02pm

#India biggest recipient of #America's economic aid over 66-year period: USAID; #Israel 2nd. #Pakistan 5th. http://www.dawn.com/news/1194228

The data, which is inflation adjusted, shows India received approximately $65.1bn in economic assistance from 1946 until 2012, followed closely by Israel, which was given $65bn.

With $44.4bn received as economic assistance from the US, Pakistan is also among the top five countries to receive economic assistance out of a total of 200 countries and regions.

Top 10 countries receiving US economic assistance from 1946-2012

India: $65.1bn
Israel: $65bn
United Kingdom: $63.6bn
Egypt: $59.6bn
Pakistan: $44.4bn
Vietnam: $41bn
Iraq: $39.7bn
South Korea: $36.5bn
Germany: $33.3bn
France: $31bn
Indian economic aid is spread out over various sectors and programs, including child survival and health, development assistance, HIV/AIDS initiatives, migration and refugee assistance, food aid, and narcotics control. The bulk of this aid ($26bn) is provided to various USAID programmes.

A majority of Israel's $65bn economic assistance was given to its Economic Support Fund and Security Support Assistance, with $56.5bn alone attributed to these programmes.

In comparison, of the $44.4bn provided to Pakistan in economic assistance, $13.8bn is given to USAID programmes, while $13.7bn is attributed to the Economic Support Fund and Security Support Assistance.


Israel received $134bn in military assistance over 1946-2012 ─ a figure which far outnumbers military assistance provided to the the second entrant on the list, Vietnam, at $77.9bn.

Read: Pakistan 3rd biggest recipients of US aid

Top 10 countries receiving US military assistance from 1946-2012

Israel: $134bn
Vietnam: $77.9bn
Egypt: $62bn
Afghanistan: $48.3bn
Turkey: $42.2bn
South Korea: $41.1bn
France: $33bn
Greece: $29.5bn
China: $26.3bn
Iraq: $24.7bn
Pakistan just misses being on the top 10 list, coming in at twelfth place with $12.9bn in military assistance from the US. India, however, is placed at 47 out of a list of 193 countries, receiving $897 million in military assistance.

It is pertinent to mention here that Pakistan received most of the military assistance from the US during the superpower's involvement in Afghanistan during the 1980s and then after 2001.

The US non-military aid to Pakistan for the period 1991-2001 averaged just $75 million per year, while the total military aid during the eleven-year period was a paltry $7 million.

Comment by Riaz Haq on September 12, 2015 at 6:29pm

In #Pakistan, U.S. Aid Agency’s Efforts Produce Dubious Results #USAID http://nyti.ms/1ULyRzL 

KARACHI, Pakistan — The ads are a staple of Pakistani television: footage of water gushing through dams, farmers standing in green fields, a girl using a computer. At the end, the red, white and blue logo of an aid organization flashes on the screen with its slogan, “from the American people.”

The organization behind the Urdu-language ads, the United States Agency for International Development, or U.S.A.I.D., has been operating in Pakistan for more than a decade, disbursing billions of dollars. But critics say the aid has had minimal impact on the ground.

Critics accuse the agency of taking on projects with little consideration for local priorities and being over-reliant on American contractors with little development experience. At the same time, they say, much of the aid money goes toward administrative costs, and large amounts have been siphoned off by Pakistani subcontractors who fail to complete work or return raw material.

A recent lawsuit against the agency highlighted the challenges and image problem it faces in a country where American aid is often viewed with suspicion, and countries like China have been making inroads with their own programs. The case, filed in Peshawar, in northern Pakistan, by three lawyers seeking the payment of legal fees from the aid agency, accused it of abandoning the recovery of United States taxpayer money from a former contractor.

Documents and correspondence filed by the lawyers lay bare the money and equipment that went to waste in a project in Pakistan’s insurgency-hit tribal areas. One subcontractor finished only two of 12 irrigation channels he was supposed to build. Another did not return more than $27,000 worth of construction material to U.S.A.I.D., and demanded nearly $30,000 in rental charges for equipment, though there was no proof of any machinery on site.

Nadeem UL Haque, the former deputy chairman of the Planning Commission, a government agency that oversees development projects, said U.S.A.I.D. had become an “aid-outsourcing agency” and that funds largely flowed back to American contractors instead of to communities.

Despite the widespread criticism about its effectiveness, some experts also acknowledge that the agency has been the victim of anti-Americanism in Pakistan and has failed to promote some of its successes.

“I would not say it’s been a failure — they’ve invested money in energy and education — but because of anti-Americanism and their own inability to effectively communicate, this hasn’t been seen,” said Raza Rumi, a fellow at the National Endowment for Democracy in Washington, who has worked in Pakistan’s development sector. “They’ve spent so much money in F.A.T.A.,” he added, referring to the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of northwest Pakistan. “The reality is no one actually knows the result.”

-----------

The development agency’s project at the center of the lawsuit in Peshawar was a $300 million initiative to create jobs and build roads in insurgency-torn districts in the tribal areas. One of the contractors on the project, Academy for Educational Development, a now-defunct American nonprofit organization, was accused in 2009 of submitting false claims and failing to inform U.S.A.I.D. that it was aware that its subcontractors were overcharging U.S.A.I.D., potentially by millions of dollars.

U.S.A.I.D. suspended Academy for Educational Development from United States government contracts and reached a settlement that involved the repayment of more than $5 million.

Academy for Educational Development was also awarded at least $300,000 after a drawn-out arbitration process with its Pakistani subcontractors — money that should have been returned to U.S.A.I.D. The Pakistani lawyers who filed the suit said that the aid agency had made no attempt to recover the money.

Comment by Riaz Haq on November 2, 2015 at 6:58pm

Pakistani, American academics meet to promote higher education linkages

HEC Chairman Dr. Mukhtar Ahmed addressed the 55 participants in a videotaped message saying, “The United States-Pakistan University Partnerships Program forges a spirit of academic collaboration between our countries’ higher education communities and contributes to the overall quality of higher education. Regular and meaningful discourse among scholars, students, and faculty has supported the Higher Education Commission’s goals to promote social sciences and humanities in Pakistan. Further, it has helped align research priorities and needs throughout the country.”

The University Partnerships Programme is a flagship higher-education program sponsored by the US Mission to Pakistan. It provides over $25 million dollars in funding to 44 universities in Pakistan and the United States to create three-year partnerships that foster collaboration, curriculum reform, and joint research. Since 2012, approximately 500 faculty members, administrators, and students from both countries have participated in this exchange programme. The first University Partnerships Best Practices Workshop was held in 2013 at the University of Wisconsin, Madison.

http://www.thenews.com.pk/Todays-News-6-348538-Pakistani-American-a...

Comment by Riaz Haq on February 21, 2016 at 4:52pm

#USAID to spend $ 450m on health, education, ag, energy, women projects in #Pakistan: director http://www.pakistantoday.com.pk/?p=492255 via @ePakistanToday

The United States International Development Agency (USAID) has planned to spend about 450 million US dollars in next American financial year on various projects from education to health and energy to agriculture beside others in Pakistan.

This was stated by Mission Director USAID to Pakistan John Groarke while talking to APP on Sunday about projects being executed and planned to be executed by the USAID in various parts of the country

He said that the USAID had executed hundreds of projects focusing five major areas – health, education, agriculture, economic growth and energy besides other areas especially women empowerment programme.

Responding to a question about agriculture dairy potential, the Mission Director said that Pakistan has a huge dairy farming potential to earn billions of dollars by exporting agricultural and dairy products.

Giving examples of agriculture and dairy products, John Groarke said that Pakistan has potential to export a large quantity of mangoes and oranges as these two Pakistani fruits were known worldwide.

“Pakistan has capacity to earn billions of dollars by capturing the world market through exporting dairy products and vegetables,” the Mission Director said.

Speaking about the importance of Pakistan for USA, the Mission Director said, “Pakistan is an important country for USA and a stable, secure and democratic Pakistan with a vibrant economy is in the national interest of the United States and Pakistan.”

According to documents made available to APP about projects of USAID, the United States has demonstrated a continued commitment to Pakistan through Kerry Lugar Berman Act. Since 2009 and the US government has disbursed over 4 billion dollars in civilian assistance in partnership with the Government of Pakistan (GOP), civil society and private sector institutions.

The USAID is executing hundreds of projects in various parts of the country and AJK having its offices in Islamabad, Lahore, Peshawar and AJK.

Comment by Riaz Haq on October 30, 2017 at 7:40pm

$241m USAID schemes underway in Sindh, says Murad

https://reliefweb.int/report/pakistan/241m-usaid-schemes-underway-s...

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It may be noted that since 2011, USAID in partnership with the provincial government has been implementing the SBEP for $165 million, including $10 million the Sindh government share. Through this partnership the SBEP improves the quality and access to education for children in Sindh by increasing and sustaining student enrollment at the primary, middle, and secondary school levels. The program is being implemented in seven districts of Northern Sindh and five towns of Karachi.

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He elaborated that major Components of SBEP include building of 106 new schools with1400 classrooms in flood-affected and other areas. Improvement of reading and numeracy skills of 750,000 children over five years, engaging up to 400 communities in the construction, operation and maintenance of schools over five years and establish effective public/private partnerships to manage these schools and ensure enrollment of at least 100,000 girls.

Syed Murad Ali Shah said that major targets of the programme are to increase knowledge and professional skills of 25,000 primary school teachers, particularly in Reading and Mathematics. “It also aimed at providing non-formal educational opportunities to 100,000 out-of-school children to enable 50,000 to transit to formal schools,” he said and added there is a target to provide capacity building opportunities to 500 government officials to implement the Sindh Government Education Reforms, increase availability of adequate health care facilities for children and train 500 government district offices/supervisors, teachers, head-teachers in developing, implementing and monitoring of Early Grade Reading Assessment (EGRA) and Early Grade Maths Assessment (EGMA).

Chairman P&D Mohammad Waseem said that so far, there have been considerable milestones achieved by SBEP that include site assessment of 875 schools completed. This assessment is helping to logically select schools for construction. Till now 33 government schools are under construction at Khairpur, Sukkur and Larkana districts. 37 SBEP targeted schools are notified as campus schools with 76 schools being consolidated and merged under government consolidation policy.

He added that the Private land owners have donated their personal land in Larkana, Sukkur and Khairpur to School Education Department for reconstruction of schools. 238 early grade teachers (Master Trainers) are trained in Reading and Mathematics Teaching Skills to further train 3,000 teachers and a comprehensive study is done by SRP to develop supplementary reading material to create a culture of reading within target schools.

Mr Wsim said that partnership with Rotary International established to equip Science and Computer Labs in hub schools and to provide reading and mathematics materials to 1,100 school libraries.

Municipal Services delivery Programme (MSDP): This programme has been launched with USAID grant of $66 million in which provincial government’s share stands at Rs926.55 million. The programme is aimed at improving and upgrading municipal services/infrastructure in six cities of the Norther Sindh. They are Jacobabad, Qambar, Shahdadkot, KN Shah, Mehar and Johi. Presently, the programme is in progress in Jacobabad and after its successful completion it would be started in other cities.

USAID has invested $10 million in establishing JIMS and expanded access to quality health care services for the residents of Jacobabad- Sindh and Balochistan. JIMS is a 133 beds hospital which offers outpatient treatment, emergency and diagnostic facilities as well as specialized services in mother and childhood center, intensive care unit and surgical facilities.

Comment by Riaz Haq on November 20, 2017 at 10:31am

USAID helping boost Pakistan’s chili production

https://www.thenews.com.pk/latest/246635-usaid-helping-boost-pakist...

The U.S.-Pakistan Partnership for Agricultural Market Development (AMD), along with the Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP) and Government of Sindh held a conference in Karachi that brought together public-private stakeholders to discuss issues and challenges pertaining to Pakistan’s chili sector.

USAID Deputy Mission Director Oghale Oddo, Federal Secretary Ministry of National Food Security & Research, Fazal Abbas Mekan, and Secretary Agriculture, Government of Sindh, Sajid Jamal Abro, participated.

“We are proud of the role USAID has played for many years to support the development of Pakistan’s agriculture sector. The U.S. government is hopeful that these efforts will help Pakistan emerge as a major player in the international market,” said Deputy Mission Director Oghale Oddo. “We are confident that we can help Pakistani chili exports become more competitive in the international arena by introducing innovative technology and providing technical assistance.”

Through discussions and interaction during the conference, stakeholders reviewed and endorsed AMD’s efforts and shared solutions to problems faced by the industry.

USAID launched the U.S.-Pakistan Partnership for Agricultural Market Development in February 2015 to improve the ability of Pakistan's commercial agriculture and livestock sectors to compete in international and national markets in the four target product lines; meat, high value and off season vegetables, mangoes, and citrus.

This partnership acts as a catalyst for development and investment in the target product lines, helps improve the quality and increase the quantity of exportable agricultural produce, and promotes cooperation among farmers, processers, exporters, and buyers of Pakistani agricultural products in international (non-U.S.) markets thus resulting in increased incomes and generating employment opportunities for Pakistani people working in the targeted product line.

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